Nigeria: Suspected Fulanis Kill 22 Christians in Plateau State

January 31, 2022

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“Suspected Fulanis Kill 22 Christians in Plateau State, Nigeria,” Morning Star News, January 28, 2022:

ABUJA, Nigeria (Morning Star News) – Suspected Fulani herdsmen killed four Christians in Plateau state on Saturday (Jan. 22), after 18 Christians were slain in another area of the state on Jan. 11, sources said.

In the two attacks, eight other Christians were reported wounded, and in one village 24 homes were burned down.

The armed assailants ambushed Christians in Dong village, on the outskirts of Jos in Jos North County, on Saturday (Jan. 22) at about 6 p.m., killing four and wounding two others, area resident Rejoice Johnson said.

“Dong, our community, has constantly been attacked by armed Muslim Fulani terrorists in the recent past,” Johnson said. “We need your prayers.”

The unprovoked attacks led to protests on Sunday (Jan. 23). Fulani herdsmen also attacked the area in May, killing seven Christians.

“Dong village has served as a place of refuge for displaced Christians since 2017,” said Yil Gonsum, an aid worker in Jos. “In 2018, hundreds of displaced Christians from Miango District fled to Dong village seeking refuge, but now both the displaced and resident Christians have severally been attacked by the herdsmen.”

On Jan. 11 in Ancha village, in Miango District of Bassa County, suspected Fulani herdsmen attacked at midnight, killing 18 Christians, after having ambushed other Christians the previous day, said area resident Danjuma Auta.

Davidson Malison, a representative of the predominantly Christian Irigwe ethnic group, confirmed the Jan. 11 killings in a press statement, noting that six of those slain were children.

“The Rigwe ethnic nationality has been visited by yet another deadly and lethal attack by Fulani terrorists (as testified by victims that survived) in the early hours of 12 midnight of Jan. 11, at Ancha village,” said Malison, spokesman for the Irigwe Development Association. “The attack, which lasted for over two hours undistracted and unchecked, led to the killing of 18 Christians, with six other Christians injured, while over 24 households with over 100 residential rooms were razed down.”

Cars, motorcycles and harvested food crops also were destroyed and many valuables stolen, he said….

“Again, the perpetrators are not invisible and untouchable or ghosts but Muslim Fulani herdsmen who have been fingered to be behind these dastardly acts,” Malison said. “Therefore, if rule of law is to be strictly adhered to, then these herdsmen must be brought out instantly and be subjected to face the full wrath of law.”

Christians in Ancha and nearby areas also suffered attacks on Jan. 7, Dec. 31 and Dec. 25, he said, resulting in several deaths….

Numbering in the millions across Nigeria and the Sahel, predominantly Muslim Fulani comprise hundreds of clans of many different lineages who do not hold extremist views, but some Fulani do adhere to radical Islamist ideology, the United Kingdom’s All-Party Parliamentary Group for International Freedom or Belief (APPG) noted in a recent report.

“They adopt a comparable strategy to Boko Haram and ISWAP [Islamic State West Africa Province] and demonstrate a clear intent to target Christians and potent symbols of Christian identity,” the APPG report states.

Christian leaders in Nigeria have said they believe herdsmen attacks on Christian communities in Nigeria’s Middle Belt are inspired by their desire to forcefully take over Christians’ lands and impose Islam as desertification has made it difficult for them to sustain their herds.