Nigeria: Jihadi militants take 100s hostage in raid on Christian community

August 27, 2020

Christian persecution in Nigeria: Christians in Nigeria have been brutalized and killed with impunity for years now, with little or no significant response from the Nigerian government or military. It is clear that Nigerian authorities have little or no interest in securing law-abiding, defenseless Christians against these unrelenting massacres, ethnic cleansing, and hostage-cleansing.

The Order of Saint Andrew the Apostle, Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, once again urgently implores the United Nations and the governments of all nations that are committed to human rights and religious freedom to make the plight of Nigeria’s Christians a top priority. Those Christians are walking the way of the Cross. May our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ also bless them with the joy of a resurrection and new flourishing of their communities.

For previous coverage of the persecution of Christians in Nigeria from, see here.

“Jihadi militants take 100s hostage in north-east Nigeria raid on Christian community,” Barnabas Fund, August 27, 2020:

A convoy of 22 trucks loaded with heavily armed jihadists thundered into mainly-Christian Kukawa town, in north-eastern Nigeria, with the militants taking hundreds hostage in a raid on 18 August.

The heavily armed Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) terrorist group, an off-shoot of Boko Haram, captured local people as they fled and launched an attack on a nearby military station protecting the town.

The 1,200 residents had only recently returned to their home town in Borno State, near the border with Lake Chad, after spending two years in refugee camps 120 miles to the south in Maiduguri, the state capital.

A local community leader, who escaped capture, lamented that the residents had returned full of hope to restart their lives and cultivate their farmlands “only to end up in the hands of the insurgents”.

Local government authorities had declared the town safe and ordered the residents to return under a military escort.  

In the past two years, some two million internally displaced people (IDPs) have been repatriated to towns in the north-east. But despite security forces’ claim to have defeated the terror groups in the region, many IDPs are wary that jihadists still have a foothold and it remains unsafe for them to return to their homes.

In July, Nigerian pastor, Joel Billi, called for urgent action to be taken to halt the relentless Boko Haram killings, abduction and rapes in the north. The Christian leader who is head of one of the region’s largest Christian denominations, Church of the Brethren in Nigeria (EYN), said that more than 8,370 church members and eight pastors had been killed, with countless more abducted during the insurgency, and some 700,000 displaced….