New Year in Nigeria: 65 Christians dead
Fulani herdsmen regularly attack Christian villages
Muslim Fulani herdsmen continue to murder Christians in Nigeria, and the latest attacks left at least 65 dead
Using guns as well as blades, the herdsmen attacked Christian villages in the Guma and Logo Local Government Areas (LGAs) on 1-2 and 5-6 January. Guards armed only with cutlasses were reportedly helpless against the attacks, with several losing their lives, but police later arrested eight herdsmen.
‘Their blood will cry’
A mass burial of 49 of the victims from Benue state, including women and children, took place on Sunday 7 January. Morning Star News reported that all the victims were members of the Universal Reformed Christian Church.
The state governor announced three days of mourning after the funeral. Governor Ortom said: “Their blood will cry to the federal government and, if the federal government does not do something, their blood will cry to the Almighty God, and I’m sure that God will deal with the situation himself.”
Some demonstrators took to the streets in Makurdi, the state capital, on 3 January to protest against President Muhammadu Buhari’s silence on the attacks.
In addition, gunmen killed at least 16 Christians leaving a New Year’s Day church service in the oil-rich region of Rivers state, and four Christians were also killed by herdsmen just two days before Christmas at a carol service, with another ten critically injured.
The chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria, Stephen Mamza, said that at least 100 people were killed by the Fulani on attacks on several villages in December, with many others missing.