Terror group Al-Shabaab has issued a call for all Christians in three Northern Kenya counties to flee immediately.
In a statement, the Islamic militants — known for their brutal persecution of believers across East Africa — brashly declared their desire to banish the local Christian community so that Muslims can take all the local jobs.
“Muslim teachers, doctors, engineers, and young graduates from the northeastern province are unemployed. Isn’t it better to give them a chance?” an Al-Shabaab spokesman said in a clip posted online, according to the Christian Post. “There is no need for the presence of disbelievers.”
The group also encouraged Somali-Kenyans to drive out Christians themselves if they refuse to leave.
According to Garissa pastor Rev. Cosmas Mwinzi, the northern region has been tense for a while, with many non-local Christians fleeing to the area in a bid to escape the conflict in neighboring Somalia.
“This is not news at all because the conduct of the local people here has always suggested that they want us to leave,” Rev. Mwinzi, an Assemblies of God minister, told International Christian Concern.
“This region has been unstable for years due to war in Somalia and hatred against non-locals who are mostly Christians. The levels of education and infrastructure in the three counties are low and it is only through the expertise and hard work of the non-locals that the living standard of the Somali people in Kenya can improve. We have non-locals in all sectors, from health to education.”
As Faithwire previously reported, in January, three non-local teachers were killed by Al-Shabaab militants in an attack on Kamuthe Primary School in Garissa.
Joseph Odhiambo, Director of missionary organization “Harvest of Hope Africa,” told Faithwire that the group has started specifically targeting educators in a bid to instill a fear that will drive other teachers away from the region.
Through ridding the area of educational opportunity, Al-Shabaab hopes that the younger generation be ignorant to the threat of Islamic extremism.
“Al Shabab Islamists are trying to destabilize education in northeastern Kenya by targeting non-resident teaching staff,” Odhiambo said. “But our God will prevail.”
In light of the recent attack, scores of non-local teachers have been transferred away from the Northeastern region to schools in safer parts of Kenya.
Last Wednesday, Al-Shabaab militants shot dead two Christians after boarding a bus traveling from Mandera County to Nairobi and demanding that passengers recite the Islamic statement of faith. A heroic Muslim man was killed after attempting to protect the Christian men from the terrorists as the fighters began separating out the passengers by faith.