Dozens of Christians are reported to have been killed at a market in the Nigerian state of Kaduna. The violence took place on Oct. 18 and resulted in several deaths as well as the burning of a local church.
According to Morning Star News, a Muslim man who was attending the market in Kasuwan Magani, about 22 miles south of the city of Kaduna, started yelling “Thief!” in order to create an atmosphere of anger and chaos. The resulting fury in the crowd sparked the later attacks and riots that claimed the lives of several people.
“A Muslim raised a false alarm about a thief in the market, which caused stampede, and then other Muslims started chanting ‘Allahu Akbar [the jihadist slogan, God is Greater],’ attacking Christians, burning houses and shops belonging to Christians in the town,” local resident Kefas Mallam told the outlet.
The Rev. James Moore, pastor of the town’s evangelical church, explained how the attackers set alight a church belonging to the Cherubim and Seraphim movement.
“There was an alert of a thief in the market,” he said. “When people heard ‘Thief! Thief!’ they were confused and started running. Unknown to the people, it was a strategy by the Muslim youth to attack the people. They went into killings, looting and burning.”
— TWIZT (@runningdog46) October 21, 2018
After a visit to the scene on Oct. 19, Kaduna Gov. Nasir El-Rufai estimated that some 55 people had died as a result of the brutal violence.
“According to what the police have briefed me so far, 55 corpses have been recovered; some burned beyond recognition,” he said.
The governor insisted that justice would be served to those who were involved in the violence, noting that authorities “are going to deal decisively with anyone involved in this.” In a video posted to Twitter, he appealed for calm across the volatile region.
Let us make our Kaduna State a place of peace.
— Governor Kaduna (@GovKaduna) October 23, 2018
“I have charged the security agencies and the authorities here, local and traditional, to ensure that everyone connected with this, whether as a participant, instigator, or even watching while it is going on, is apprehended and prosecuted,” he said.
Those on road to Kaduna from Abuja or Kano Should stay away , May God bring Solid peace in Kaduna .
Please help Us retweet to safe travellers. pic.twitter.com/IvaSxyRa1X
— Engr. Ibrahim Said Uba (@IbrahimSaidUba1) October 21, 2018
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari also condemned the violence, noting that the local authorities “have been authorized to do everything possible to restore calm.”
The violence in Kaduna, which has resulted in the deaths of 55 innocent people, is condemnable. The Police have been authorized to do everything possible to restore calm. A Special Intervention Force has been deployed to the flash-points, and the IG will provide regular updates.
— Muhammadu Buhari (@MBuhari) October 21, 2018
“In commending the Kaduna State government for its rapid response to the crisis, the president appealed to community leaders to engage in regular dialogue to nip imminent crises in the bud, while admonishing the people to develop the spirit of tolerance and patience at all times,” stated Garbu Shehu, the president’s official spokesman, according to Premier U.K.
May God intervene in Kaduna and bring the killings to a permanent end.
— Peter Ayodele Fayose (@GovAyoFayose) October 21, 2018
Vice President Atiku Abubakar tweeted that he was “saddened by needless loss of scores of lives” from what he called an “avoidable conflict.”
“May the souls of the deceased rest even as no efforts should be spared to bring the perpetrators to justice,” he added.
Earlier this month, on Oct. 3, the notorious Islamist Fulani militants brutally massacred some 19 Christians in the country’s Plateau State. Just a day later, in Nkiendoro village in Bassa Local Government Area of Plateau State, another four people were murdered, and 35 houses burned to the ground.
(H/T: Morning Star News)