As the world continues to condemn the violence against Christians in West Africa by Muslim Fulani extremists, reports indicate 37 Christians have been killed in Nigeria’s Kaduna state so far this month.
As CBN News reported, earlier this month at least 33 people were killed in attacks by Islamic extremists on five Christian communities in the southern Kaduna state of Nigeria over a two-day period.
In addition, Muslim Fulani militants in Kachia County on Aug. 17 killed four Christians and kidnapped their driver, Danlami Dariya, as their vehicle made its way from Katul village, area resident Zephaniah Bature told Morning Star News (MSN).
“Four of the Christians inside the car were killed instantly,” Bature told MSN by text message. “The driver was kidnapped by the herdsmen, and among those killed are three men and an old woman.”
The Islamic extremists also attacked Kachia County’s Bugai village on Aug. 16, according to area resident Mamman Danbaba.
“There was yet another attack by Fulani herdsmen at about 8 pm,” Danbaba said by text message. “Many lives were lost, and many Christians were injured. Houses and properties burned.”
The United Kingdom’s All-Party Parliamentary Group for International Freedom or Belief (APPG) noted in its recent report titled Nigeria: Unfolding Genocide, the vast majority of millions of Muslim Fulani tribesmen do not hold extremist views. However, some of the Fulani clans do stand by the radical Islamist ideology.
“They adopt a comparable strategy to Boko Haram and Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) and demonstrate a clear intent to target Christians and potent symbols of Christian identity,” the APPG report describes.
Fulani herdsmen have increasingly adopted ideology and methods similar to Islamic extremist groups like Boko Haram, and some come from outside Nigeria, This Day’s Akin Osuntokun wrote in an Aug. 14 column for the Nigerian news outlet.
“Today, a new breed of herdsman has emerged: an aggressive and murderous terrorist bearing sophisticated firearms such as AK-47s and even rocket launchers,” Osuntokun wrote. “And they become the mobile avant-garde army of political Islam in Nigeria. Given the country’s porous borders, many of them are recent immigrants from neighboring countries. Herdsmen from Niger, Chad, and Mali can walk across the border and immediately lay claim to all the sacrosanct rights appertaining to bona fide Nigerian nationals.”
The APPG report also noted that the Nigerian president’s tribal loyalties cannot be overlooked.
“In 2015, Muhammadu Buhari, a Fulani, was elected president of Nigeria,” the report reads. “He has done virtually nothing to address the behavior of his fellow tribesmen in the Middle Belt and in the south of the country.”
Nigeria is ranked 12th on Open Doors’ 2020 World Watch List of countries where Christians suffer the most persecution.