45 Christians Slaughtered in Religious Violence in Plateau State, Nigeria
Fulani Muslim herdsmen along with Muslim soldiers killed at least 45 Berom Christians in Plateau state, Nigeria this past week. Local Christians said Muslim soldiers were joining their fellow Muslims and were shooting and killing Christians.
Compass Direct reported, via ROP:
Fulani Muslim herdsmen along with Muslim soldiers have killed at least 45 ethnic Berom Christians in Plateau state in the past week, Christians in this northern-central Nigerian town said.
Smaller attacks beginning on Nov. 20, reportedly over allegations by Fulani Muslims of cattle theft, preceded an attack on a Barkin Ladi church on Nov. 23 that killed four Christians, and an assault the next day left 35 Christians dead in Barkin Ladi and nearby Kwok village, according to area Christian leaders.
Church attendance was decimated yesterday as thousands of Christians have left the area.
“Christians are fleeing the town because we have no guns to fight back,” said one woman in a group of six Christians trying to leave Barkin Ladi. “Muslims have guns, and they have their soldiers fighting for them, so we have no choice but to leave town.”
…David Gyang, 51, an elder at the COCIN Barkin Ladi church, said Muslims set off a religious crisis by attacking Christians at the church site on Wednesday night (Nov. 23) and then launching a major offensive the next morning.
“Some of the Christian victims in this attack that I know include a Christian police officer, one Mr. Bulus, who is the station officer of the Barkin Ladi police station,” Gyang said. “He was inside his house on that day, and these Muslims broke the walls of his room and went inside to kill him and his son. A second Christian victim is Solomon Pam. He was attacked and had his hand broken.”
Gyang lamented that Muslim soldiers brought to town to restore order joined their fellow Muslims in killing and maiming Christians.
“Muslims soldiers took sides with their fellow Muslims and were shooting and killing Christians,” he said. “They also had soldiers guarding mosques in the town, but none was sent to watch over our churches, and that is the reason Muslims were able to burn the Baptist church in the town.”
The COCIN church in Barkin Ladi had an average Sunday service attendance of about 1,200 people, but yesterday only 50 showed up, he said.