Monday, January 16, 2012

Nigeria: Boko Haram Kills Four Christians and Threatens Village Attacks

This home-grown terrorist group is conducting a brutal campaign that has claimed the lives of many Christians in Nigeria, and the killing continue

By Dan Wooding, who was born in Nigeria
He is the Founder of ASSIST Ministries

YORBA LINDA, CA (ANS) -- Boko Haram gunmen on Thursday, January 12, 2012, shot dead four Igbo Christian men in Potiskum town in Yobe State, and threatened to launch an attack on two nearby villages later that evening.

Boko Haram gunmen
“The four men were reportedly shot in a vehicle as they were migrating southwards to rejoin their families, who had already moved to that area to escape the violence. Previous attempts to join them had been hampered by the indefinite general strike against fuel subsidy removal, which has brought the nation to a halt,” said a spokesperson for UK-based Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW).

“On the same day, Boko Haram also threatened to attack Kukargadu and Dagare villages, both of which have large populations of indigenous Christians. However, extra security personnel were deployed to the villages, which were consequently kept safe through the night.”

The CSW spokesperson went on that say that on Tuesday, eight men and a woman were killed by suspected Boko Haram gunmen in Potiskum. All nine are thought to have been Christians. The group, which included a lecturer at the Federal College of Education/Technical in Potiskum, four policemen and a young man employed by Jam'a Clinic, were in a bar in the Dorawa Ward when they were shot at by gunmen who escaped on motorcycles. On the previous day, two Christians were also shot at by gunmen on a motorcycle in the Barracks area of Potiskum, but escaped unhurt by falling to the ground and playing dead.

A 24-hour curfew has now been imposed in Yobe, and motorcycles have been banned due to Boko Haram’s regular usage of these vehicles.

The deteriorating security situation has led to rising speculation that Yobe State could soon be entirely emptied of its Christian population as entire lorry-loads of people have been departing the state. One source, who informed CSW-Nigeria he was assisting over two hundred families of indigenous Christians with relocation, said, “If this continues unabated, in the next few months or weeks there may be no Christians in Yobe State. Though our houses, jobs and churches are here, we have no choice but to leave”
In several instances, added the CSW spokesperson, fuel subsidy removal protests are being used for alternative agendas.

On Tuesday, a fuel protest in Gusau, Zamfara State, degenerated into an attack on Ebenezer Baptist Church as rioters removed equipment and other valuables from the premises and set them on fire. A 24-hour curfew was imposed in Kaduna City and its environs yesterday, after Muslim youths went to the governor's official residence on Tuesday claiming they wanted to seize control.

On Wednesay, a 6am to 6pm curfew was imposed in Niger State after rioting broke out in the capital, Minna, and the governor's campaign headquarters was attacked.

Meanwhile, retaliatory attacks on Hausa-Fulani neighborhoods in Benin City in southern Nigeria on 9 and 10 January during fuel protests resulted in five deaths, mass displacement and the destruction of an Islamic School attached to the central mosque. This worrying development follows a week of violent events in Adamawa State that left at least 37 people dead in which southerners were specifically targeted.

Mervyn Thomas
CSW’s Chief Executive Mervyn Thomas said, “CSW is deeply grieved by the continuing deaths, injuries and displacements across Nigeria. The fact that an entire local Christian population is being forced to flee from their homes and the deliberate targeting of the Igbo population by a terrorist group are appalling manifestations of religious and ethnic cleansing. We call on the state and federal officials and security agents to do everything in their power to end Boko Haram’s reign of terror and bring an end to the ongoing violence, which constitutes an immediate threat to the unity of this multi-religious and multi-ethnic nation.”

Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) is a Christian organization working for religious freedom through advocacy and human rights, in the pursuit of justice.

Note: Boko Haram, is a terrorist organization based in the north east of Nigeria, in the areas predominated by the Kanuri ethnic group founded by Mohammed Yusuf in 2001or 2002, the group is a Muslim sect that seeks to “abolish the secular system and establish an Islamic state” and “establish Sharia system of government in the country.”

For further information or to arrange interviews please contact Kiri Kankhwende, Press Officer at Christian Solidarity Worldwide on +44 (0)20 8329 0045 / +44 (0) 78 2332 9663, or visit

Dan Wooding, 71, is an award winning British journalist now living in Southern California with his wife Norma, to whom he has been married for 48 years. They have two sons, Andrew and Peter, and six grandchildren who all live in the UK. He is the founder and international director of ASSIST (Aid to Special Saints in Strategic Times) and the ASSIST News Service (ANS) and was, for ten years, a commentator, on the UPI Radio Network in Washington, DC. He now hosts the weekly “Front Page Radio” show on KWVE in Southern California which is also carried throughout the United States. The program is also aired in Great Britain on Calvary Chapel Radio UK and also in Belize and South Africa. Besides this, Wooding is a host for His Channel Live, which is carried via the Internet to some 192 countries and also provides a regular commentary for Worship Life Radio on KWVE. You can follow Dan Wooding on Facebook under his name there or at ASSIST News Service. He is the author of some 44 books, one of which is his autobiography, “From Tabloid to Truth”, which is published by Theatron Books. To order a copy, press this link. Wooding, who was born in Nigeria of British missionary parents, has also recently released his first novel “Red Dagger” which is available this link.

** You may republish this story with proper attribution.

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