Persecution of Christians in Mozambique: according to a 2017 census, Christians, mostly Roman Catholics, constitute 59% of Mozambique’s population; Muslims comprise 19%. However, the Islamic State (ISIS) has begun to step up operations in the country’s gas-rich northeast, where the Muslim population is largely concentrated. That is where this attack took place; ISIS’ boast about killing Christians makes it clear that its objectives in this attack were not solely economic. All over Africa, Christians are increasingly threatened as Islamist groups become ever more aggressive and violent. Mozambique is a relatively new arena for their operations.

For more coverage of the persecution of Christians in Mozambique, see here.

“ISIS brag of ‘killing Christians’ in Mozambique massacre that claimed one British life as tales of horror from the attack emerge including a baby shot as his mother carried him to safety,” by Charlotte Mitchell, Mailonline, March 30, 2021:

The Islamic State has bragged of ‘killing dozens of Mozambican armed forces and the Christians’ in a days-long assault near a major gas plant in the country’s northeast. 

ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement issued by its Amaq news agency on Monday alongside a photo of militants from the group celebrating the capture of the town of Palma.

Scores of people have been killed, including one British contractor, and dozens of expats remain unaccounted for following the attack, which began last Wednesday.  

A caterer from Somerset who worked at a hotel in the area is among the missing. 

Tales of horror began to emerge on Monday as some survivors made it to safety and established contact with loved ones.

A small UN plane carrying adults and children – including an injured one-year-old baby – arrived on Monday at the airport in Pemba, the provincial capital where many survivors have been evacuated to.  

According to the Lusa news agency, a bullet hit the baby’s leg while he was in his mother’s arms as they ran from the rebels. 

ISIS has alleged that 55 people have been killed but this has not been independently verified….

At least seven people, including an unnamed British contractor, are known to have been killed when a convoy from a hotel was ambushed by waiting militants. 

The Amarula Lodge had become a refuge for 190 residents and locals but evacuation plans were complicated as the insurgents drew nearer….

Al-Shabab, an ISIS-affiliated jihadi group with no links to the Somali militants, has made gains in Cabo Delgado, the northeast of Mozambique, and seized the strategic port of Mocimboa da Praia in August before the latest attack in Palma….