Islamists Kill 10 Christians in Northern Nigeria

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

by Joseph DeCaro, Worthy News Correspondent

nigeriaMAIDUGURI, NIGERIA (Worthy News)-- Members of the Islamist group Boko Haram have murdered at least 10 Christians in Maiduguri during the last two months in what one Christian leader is calling a "silent killing" of Christians.

In an interview with International Christian Concern, an anonymous local church leader said: "Boko Haram is seeking to eliminate Christianity because they want Islamic law. They don’t want to see anything Christian in the northern states. That is why churches are being persecuted and Muslims who don't follow the Boko Haram are also persecuted."

"Most of the Christians have fled the city in fear of further attacks by the Islamists. Of the churches that remain, some have felt compelled to suspend their services to protect their congregations," according to an ICC report.

When asked what Christians could do for fellow believers in Nigeria, one church leader said, "They can pray for their fellow Christian brothers and sisters in Maiduguri. (We) ask for assistance in the rebuilding of churches that have been burned down since 2006. The government has not compensated for the loss of Christians, but it has compensated for losses that Muslims suffered."

In the past, the Nigerian government used only its security forces to fight the Islamists, but when human rights groups criticized the indiscriminate killing of civilians, the governemnt established a committee to investigate Boko Haram members and the motives for their violence.

"We welcome the deployment of the Nigerian security forces to protect innocent civilians from the attacks by Boko Haram," said Jonathan Racho, ICC's Regional Manager for Africa. "We also welcome the establishment of the committee to investigate Boko Haram. We call upon the committee to look into the plight of the victims and ensure that the perpetrators of the violence are brought to justice."