The combination of a deadly pandemic and a scorching summer heat have done nothing to quell the murderous campaign of Boko Haram Fulani militants against Christian farming communities and humanitarian aid workers in northern and central Nigeria.
The most recent attack was just yesterday (July 22, 2020), during which members of the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) released and circulated a village of the execution of a group of five humanitarian aid workers in Borno State. This incident is just one of the tens of videos released showing murders of kneeling and solemn Nigerian Christians and aid workers by militants in all-black hoods.
Update 23 July 2020: It has been confirmed by Morning Star News that three of the five humanitarian aid workers killed in Borno State were Christian. Ishaku Yakubu, who worked for Action Against Hunger, was a member of the Church of the Brethren; Luka Filibus, who worked for the International Rescue Committee, was also a member of the Church of the Brethren; and Joseph Prince was a member of the Redeemed Christian Church. The video of the murder, which was uploaded onto YouTube by Eons Intelligence but was subsequently removed, showing one of the militants explaining the motives prior to shooting the five individuals in the back of their heads with AK-47s:
“This is a message to all those being used by infidels to convert Muslims to Christianity. We want you out there to understand that those of you being used to convert Muslims to Christianity are only being used for selfish purposes. And that is the reason whenever we capture you, they don’t care to rescue you or work towards securing your release from us; and this is because they don’t need you or value your lives. We therefore, call on you to return to Allah by becoming Muslims. We shall continue to block all routes [highways] you travel. If you don’t heed our warning, the fate of these five individuals will be your fate.”
It has also been reported and confirmed that this Monday, July 20, 11 Nigerian Christians were killed in a deadly Fulani militant attack– as depressing and horrifying as this sounds, this comes as no surprise to anyone who is familiar with the state of affairs in Nigeria. Fulani militant attacks on Christian farming communities happen multiple times a week, in multiple locations throughout northern and central Nigeria, and leave tens dead each time.
This attack occurred in Gora Gan village, located in southern Kaduna state, when some 50 Fulani militants ambushed the community and began to set homes on fire- 11 community members were killed, more injured and transported to Zonkwa General Hospital, and even more escaped the area and went to the local displacement camp, bringing the camp’s current population to over 500.
Since June, 50 Christians in Kaduna state alone have died as the result of Fulani militant attacks, including Evangelical Church Winning All Reverend Bulus Bayi, a respected and loved church leader and community member. On July 19, Christians were attacked by Fulani militants during a wedding ceremony, leaving 18 dead and 30 injured. On July 17, an attack on Dova Avong village killed two Christian children, ages 3 and 6, among others. Also on July 17, four Christians were killed and ten abducted in Mai-Ido village. 20 Christians were killed in Kaduna’s Chibuak and Kigudu villages from July 9 through July 11. According to Roman Catholic Reverend Aaron Tanko:
“Some people are still missing, so I cannot conclusively say this is the casualty figure. Some of those killed are my parishioners, and other Christians of other church denominations. Christians here are at the mercy of Fulani herdsmen, as these herdsmen are always well-armed and they invade our communities and kill Christians at will.”