Growth of Islamic Fundamentalism in Nigeria

On January 3, 2017, the Catholic News Agency (CNA) reported from KAFANCHAN, Nigeria, on the increasing threat to Christians from Islamist violence and terrorism which is responsible for over 12,000 deaths and the destruction of some 2,000 churches.

Ominously, while Boko Haram is responsible for most of the killings, the report states that in the past year “a new source of Islamist terror has hit the country in the form of the Fulani Herdsmen Terrorists (FHT).”

Bishop Joseph Bagobiri

According to the Bishop of Kafanchan Diocese, Joseph Bagobiri, attacks in his jurisdiction since September 2016 are responsible for “53 villages burned down, 808 people murdered and 57 wounded, 1,422 houses and 16 churches destroyed.”

The report states that while the FHT “is not very known in the West, it is becoming a huge menace to Christians and moderate Muslims alike.”

Bishop Bagobiri expressed surprise that “the persecution of Christians in Nigeria is not given anything like the same level of international attention” as the plight of Christians in the Middle East, and has accused the Nigerian government of indifference.

According to the report Bishop Bagobiri stated that the upsurge of violence against Christians “reflects the growth of Islamic fundamentalism in Nigeria, in particular the imposition of sharia law, which has now been introduced into 12 of the 36 states of Nigeria, including Kaduna State.”

The CNA report can be accessed here:

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