Inside Nigeria - The Famine Caused By War

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Image: Women waiting for food distribution in Nigeria.
By Beth Ross | 28 August 2017

Famine And Fighting 

You’ve probably heard about the famine sweeping across Nigeria, South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen. 20 million people are at risk of starvation and even the UN’s attempts to raise enough money to support them have fallen short. 

This has been reported as the worst humanitarian crisis since World War II. Christians in Nigeria are among those suffering the most. 

This famine isn’t caused by a natural disaster or drought. It’s caused by war.

Nigeria can almost be divided in two, with the south being majority Christian, and the north majority Muslim. It’s here in the north of Nigeria where Christians see violence, oppression and persecution. 

The Islamic State Of Africa 

Since 2009 the Islamic extremist group Boko Haram have tried to take over the country. In 2015, they pledged allegiance to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. Two core parts of their mission are to destroy the church and establish an Islamic governed state. 

Thousands of churches have been destroyed, businesses shut down and many Christians have been abducted – including the 276 Chibok girls. Thousands have been forced to flee their homes and now live in makeshift camps. Families haven’t been able to farm for three years, and now their food reserves have run out. Now there is a man-made famine ravaging northern Nigeria.  

A New Perspective 

“Life has not been easy for us,” said Rhoda, who lost her father in a Boko Haram attack. 

“Some organisations did bring help to people, but the Muslims just shared it among themselves.” 

Rhoda lined up with thousands of others at the local church. When she received the food aid you helped provide, she couldn’t help but cry and hug the nearest worker. “When God says: ‘Never will I leave you nor forsake you,’ he was talking to me. Who am I that you send help to me? I am speechless. You are indeed angels sent by God to wipe my tears away.”  

“It is true that even in the heat of the crisis, gunshots and persecution, Christians could still show love. I hated Muslims and swore never to help them even if they are at the point of death, because they always deny us any support. But this support I received through Open Doors is unconditional and it has helped me to alter my hatred for Muslims. I have found a new perspective.” 

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