Nigeria’s radical Fulani Muslim herdsmen continue to reign terror on Christians in the region. Most recently, the group executed the wife of an evangelical pastor just three days after slaying a Baptist pastor in another part of the state, according to Morning Star News.
To make matters worse, the Islamic militant group collected a ransom of 250,000 naira ($690) from the woman’s family before word reached them that Esther Ishaku Katung had already been killed after being kidnapped in Bagoma on Sept. 14, said the Rev. Joseph Hayab, chairman of the Kaduna state chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).
Esther’s husband, the Rev. Ishaku Katung of the Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA) congregation in Bagoma, survived after Fulani herdsmen broke into the couple’s home while they slept. He suffered gunshot wounds from the brutal attack, and militants kidnapped his wife, Pastor Hayab told Morning Star News.
“Information we got from some of the kidnapped victims who escaped from the herdsmen’s enclave shows that Esther Katung and two other victims had escaped from the herdsmen’s captivity, but she was recaptured by them,” Hayab said. “She attempted to escape with two others after they were kidnapped by the herdsmen; this infuriated the herdsmen, leading them to kill her. They broke her legs in order to prevent her from escaping and smashed her head too. This led to her death.”
The ongoing violence of the Fulani
Though media coverage of Fulani violence has been scant, the extremist group is believed to responsible for the deaths of tens of thousands of Nigerians since Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari, who hails from the Fulani tribe, took office in 2015.
“Nigeria is now the deadliest place in the world to be a Christian,” human rights lawyer Emmanuel Ogebe told CBN last year. “What we have is a genocide. They are trying to displace the Christians, they are trying to possess their land and they are trying to impose their religion on the so-called infidels and pagans who they consider Christians to be.”
Violent attacks on Christian communities, and especially church leaders, are common in Nigeria. Just last month, Faithwire reported that a Nigerian priest narrowly escaped a murder attempt by the Fulani right after the terror group killed another nearby clergy member.
Nigeria is the 12th most dangerous place in the world for Christians, according to Open Doors’ annual World Watch List, and it appears to only be getting worse as the body count rises every week. Despite this, news of these attacks rarely makes headlines.
Please join Faithwire in praying for our persecuted brothers and sisters in Nigeria and around the world.