Amidst growing insecurity in Nigeria, Christians are increasingly being targeted in violent attacks and kidnappings. In one week in July alone, five priests were kidnapped, and at least one priest has been killed.
Data compiled by the Observatory of Religious Freedom in Africa (ORFA) shows how, amidst an increase in violent attacks against civilians across Nigeria over the period of two years (1 October 2019 – 30 September 2021), “Christians were disproportionately affected by killings in the context of attacks by Boko Haram, ISWAP, armed Fulani herdsmen and ‘bandits’”.
While much violence goes unreported and the numbers are likely the tip of the iceberg, the researchers recorded the highest number of casualties among Christians: 3,163 Nigerian Christians were killed for their faith in 2020 and 4,303 in 2021. One of the report’s key findings is that most deadly attacks take place during the farming season.
“This finding strengthens the suspicion that the attackers aim to kill or starve their victims, especially the Christians in northern Nigeria,” the researchers said.
Pray For Nigeria:
- Pray that Christians in Nigeria will hold on to Jesus despite fear of attack.
- Pray that extremists who have persecuted Christians will come to know Jesus.
- Pray for God’s peace over the nation.
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