Three Killed As Nigeria "Taliban" Fighters Attack Christian Village

Thursday, July 6, 2006

By BosNewsLife News Center

ABUJA, NIGERIA (BosNewsLife) -- At least three people were killed and 30 others injured when Nigeria's 'Taliban' militia attacked a Christian village in Taraba State, rights watchers and news reports said Wednesday July 5.

The UK-based Christian Today newspaper said on its website that the fighters attacked Kumutu village with "sophisticated weapons." It quoted Release International (RI), a Christian organization supporting persecuted Christians, as saying that the violence included "the burning of houses, and the killing of three villagers and the injuring of 30 others."

Three of the dead were members of the Christian Reformed Church, RI's investigators said. The attack apparently followed a dispute over cattle grazing, which investigators claimed may have been started deliberately to justify the attack against Christians.

There were fears Wednesday, July 5, that the militia was planning more attacks against Christian villages in the area, although the state's governor has been pleading for calm, Christian Today said. RI claimed in the published remarks that "thousands of militant Muslims, styling themselves after the Taliban," have been seen near Wukari in Taraba State, which borders with Cameroon.


There was no immediate independent confirmation of the report. However Nigeria has seen a series of attacks against Christian towns and villages, especially in several northern states, to pave the way for strict Islamic law.

In Borno state earlier this year over 60 Christians were reportedly killed, and nearly 60 churches destroyed in sectarian violence. Those attacks were linked to the publication of Mohammed cartoons in Denmark, which were seen as offensive to followers of Islam.

The Chief Executive of Release International, Andy Dipper has condemned the attacks and urged the Nigerian government to protect its citizens. "Jesus said love your enemies. And that’s what Christians who have been attacked across Nigeria are sincerely trying to do – to love and forgive their neighbors who have turned against them." But "we call on the Nigerian government to act swiftly to prevent further bloodshed and tensions between communities," Dipper was quoted as saying. (With reports from Nigeria).

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