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Attackers kill dozens of Christians, burn a church in north-central Nigerian state

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Attackers killed dozens of Christians in a north-central state of Nigeria. Media reports have it that on October 18, Muslims attacked a market in Kasuwan Magani some 36 kilometers south of Kaduna sity. As a result of this attack dozens of Christians were killed while a church building was torched.

Christian persecution in Nigeria

A witness was quoted by the media who said: “A Muslim raised a false alarm about a thief in the market, which caused stampede, and then other Muslims started chanting (their religious slogan), attacking Christians, burning houses and shops belonging to Christians in the town”.

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The incident unfolded late afternoon, a man began yelling “Thief!” causing a uproar which was followed by attack on Christians and their homes and businesses. Reverend James Moore from the Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA), told the media that the assailants had burnt down a church belonging to the Cherubim and Seraphim movement.

“There was an alert of a thief in the market,” he was quoted. “When people heard ‘Thief! Thief!’ they were confused and started running. Unknown to the people, it was a strategy by the Muslim youth to attack the people. They went into killings, looting and burning.” He said that a 24-hour curfew was imposed in the town and therefore exact number of casualties was hard to give.

Governor of Kaduna Nasir El-Rufai visited the site on the day following the attack and stated that 55 people had been killed. Talking to the reporters, he said that a curfew was imposed while the security agencies were trying to bring situation under control. “According to what the police have briefed me so far, 55 corpses have been recovered; some burned beyond recognition,” he said.

“It cannot continue, we are going to deal decisively with anyone involved in this,” Governor El-Rufai said. “This country belongs to all of us; this state belongs to all of us. No one is going to chase anyone away. So, you must learn to live with everyone in peace and justice.”

He said that violence was “totally unacceptable,” and that all involved in perpetrating violence will be punished. “I have charged the security agencies and the authorities here, local and traditional, to ensure that everyone connected with this, whether as a participant, instigator, or even watching while it is going on, is apprehended and prosecuted,” Kudana Governor said.