By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent BosNewsLife
ABUJA, NIGERIA (BosNewsLife) – Islamic militants have brutally murdered at least hundreds of Christians in Nigeria this year, a new investigative report claims.
The International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law (ISCLRL) said the victims included ”620 Christians hacked to death by Nigerian Jihadists in the first four months and 15 days of 2020.”
The fighters reportedly seek to establish strict Islamic rule and try to cease farmland from Christians in this nation of nearly 200-million people. Some Christian sources say as many as 1,000 believers may have been killed this year, in some cases supported by local authorities and the military. Photos received by BosNewsLife from other sources showed also injured survivors of recent attacks, including young children.
In its report, obtained by Worthy News, the ISCLRL advocacy group noted that some 32,000 Christians were killed in its words “hacked to death” since 2009.
However, the latest killings this year make clear this death toll could rise dramatically without more security, the report suggested.
At least 2.5 million people have been displaced by years of conflict and violence in Nigeria, according to the Internal Displacement Monitor Centre.
“Nigeria’s main Islamic Jihadists, the militant Fulani Herdsmen and Boko Haram/ISWAP have intensified their anti-Christian violence in the old Middle Belt and Northeast regions,” added ISCLRL.
The militants have been “hacking to death in the past four months and half of 2020 no fewer than 620 defenseless Christians. And [they were involved in the] wanton burning or destruction of their centers of worship and learning,” claimed the ISCLRL.
“The atrocities against Christians have gone unchecked,” the group said, adding that the government did not intervene. Anti-Christian violence has “risen to alarming apogee with the country’s security forces and concerned political actors looking the other way or colluding with the Jihadists,” the ISCLRL claimed. “Houses burnt or destroyed during the period are in their hundreds; likewise, dozens of Christian worship and learning centers.”
In mid-May alone, numerous Adara communities of southern Kaduna State “were relentlessly attacked by suspected Fulani militants”, said advocacy group Jubilee Campaign.
That was “leading to the gruesome and untimely deaths of at least 23 Nigerian Christians. And injuries of tens of others who sustained brutal injuries from guns and machetes,” the group told BosNewsLife.
It said it had urged prayers for the survivors of these violent attacks, “for healing, peace and for comfort.” The group also asked its supporters to pray for shelter, food, and the spiritual needs of the internally displaced in Nigeria.
Jubilee Campaign also mentioned prayers for “an end to violent attacks”. And for protection of renowned rights investigator Alheri Bawa Magaji and “for the church in Nigeria to remain strong.”