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15 Christians killed in fresh Nigerian massacre  print

Published on December 31, 2012 by   ·   12 Comments

In another deadly move portraying Nigeria’s Borno state as a killing field for Nigerian Christians, attackers have stormed a church service in Kiyak village in the outskirts of Chibok, killing another set of 15 worshippers.

It was the second major killing of Christians in the Chibok area. Early in December, 10 Christians were also killed in the area.

Though Nigeria’s military denied the latest attack in a statement, the regional coordinator for the country’s National Emergency Management Agency, Mohammed Kanar, confirmed it, saying the victims were shot dead.

Shekau, Boko Haram leader

News of the killings emerged after President Goodluck Jonathan questioned whether deadly Islamist attacks on churches in his country and other violence worldwide could be signs of coming “end times”.

“We received information from our personnel in Chibok that some attackers stormed a church during Sunday service yesterday and killed 15 people,” Kanar told AFP.

He later specified that the attack was at an evangelical church in Kyachi village outside Chibok.

The attack followed another gruesome killing Friday that saw attackers slit the throats of 15 Christians in a pre-dawn raid in Musari, also in Borno state, where Boko Haram has been based.

During a Christmas Eve service last week, gunmen attacked a church in the neighbouring Yobe state, killing six people, including the pastor, before setting the building ablaze.

Violence linked to Boko Haram’s insurgency in northern and central Nigeria is believed to have left some 3,000 people dead since 2009, including killings by the security forces.

Last year’s violence had prompted Jonathan to declare a state of emergency in the hardest-hit areas.

During comments Sunday in which he mentioned attacks on churches in Nigeria, Syria’s war and the situation in the Central African Republic, where rebels have pushed their way across the impoverished country, Jonathan spoke of the Biblical end times.

“I was just wondering, could this be a clear way of telling us that the end times are so close?” he told the church congregation.

Some Christians believe in the idea of chaos in connection with the second coming of Jesus Christ, commonly referred to as the “end times”. Such beliefs are based on passages in the New Testament’s Book of Revelation.

Jonathan was speaking at an evangelical Christian church service in the capital. The church belongs to the EYN denomination, common among Christians in the violence-torn northeast.

Local media quoted the church pastor as saying that 109 EYN members have been killed and 50 branches burnt. According to Kanar of the emergency agency, Sunday’s attack also involved an EYN church.

Muslims and symbols of Nigerian authority have often been Boko Haram’s targets, but the group has also specifically targeted Christians, including carrying out suicide bombings on churches.

Jonathan has previously accused Boko Haram of seeking to destabilise the government and incite a sectarian crisis.

On Sunday, while speaking of the rebels in the Central African Republic, Jonathan said: “They were quite close to taking over the capital city, just as Boko Haram is taking over Abuja for me and those working in government to run and hide somewhere else.”

He vowed however that Boko Haram would not succeed and that the violence would be brought under control.

“If the idea of Boko Haram is to stop Nigerians from worshipping God, they will not succeed,” he said.

“If the idea of Boko Haram is to stop government from providing the dividends of democracy, they will not succeed. … God willing and with our commitment, the excesses of Boko Haram and other criminal organisations will be brought to a reasonable control.”

.This story was updated 1 January, with reports that NEMA and the NEMA official quoted denied that 15 persons were killed in the village near Chibok.

The AFP posted the update thus:

Nigeria’s emergency agency on Tuesday denied a report from one of its officials that 15 people were killed at a church in the country’s volatile northeast, saying two were dead in unclear circumstances.

An official from the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) on Monday told journalists that attackers had killed 15 people during a church service Sunday in a remote village outside the town of Chibok.

The official who spoke is the agency’s coordinator for the northeast region, but the agency’s headquarters issued a statement on Tuesday providing a drastically different version. The military meanwhile denied any incident occurred.

The statement said the emergency agency had contacted the official quoted, Mohammed Kanar, and that he had denied giving the information. AFP could not reach him for comment on Tuesday.

NEMA “has denied a report claiming that 15 worshippers were killed in an outskirt of Chibok local government council of Borno state on Sunday,” the statement said.

“Though some of the reports claimed a source from NEMA provided the information, the agency not only contacted the same officer who denied it in its entirety, it also assigned a special team to investigate and verify the allegation which was later found to be unsubstantiated and untrue.

“Meanwhile the team has also discovered that two people were killed by unidentified gunmen around the area on Sunday and whose bodies had been deposited in a hospital. The victims were a security man and a bystander.”

Police could not be reached for comment. Medical officials in the Chibok area also could not be reached.

Lieutenant Colonel Sagir Musa, a spokesman for a military task force in the region, which has been hard hit by Islamist extremist group Boko Haram, told AFP he was not aware of any incident in the area on Sunday.

Asked about the NEMA statement saying two were dead, he maintained his previous statement and declined further comment.

Death tolls and information on attacks are often controversial and conflicting in Nigeria, with authorities under pressure to show progress in the fight against Boko Haram.

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Posted by on December 31, 2012, 11:26 pm. Filed under Breaking News, National, News, Today's Headlines. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

12 Comments for “15 Christians killed in fresh Nigerian massacre”

  1. Papi Dee

    Shoeless to clueless president talking of end times instead of tackling the situation at hand from a realistic angle he is attempting to hide his inadequacies under religion.This guy is totally inept.

  2. Papi Dee

    Shoeless to clueless president talking of end times instead of tackling the situation at hand from a realistic angle he is attempting to hide his inadequacies under religion.This guy is totally inept.Klepto pesido

  3. Look for solution Jonathan.Please declare a state of emergency in Borno,Yobe,Bauchi,Kano and Kaduna.Military administrators to be appointed.Give 6months and see.
    l just wonder why you refused to do just that.

  4. 2013 is a year of judgement for the blood sucking demonic god of bokoharam. ‘ I come quickly saith the Lord’. It does not matter the number of horns that this demon has. Dagon shall disappeear at the breath from GOD’s nostril.

  5. Princess Onna

    Why and what are you Christians still there for? When a guest is told he/she is unwelcome you make your retreat with dignity. Please Christians return to your home states, life cannot be worse. You will at least still have your life and that of your family. Since government is not ready to stem this curse called Boko Haram we must all return home to our states and send these mallams back to the north. God save Nigeria,

  6. may lightning struck GEJ and all his cronies looting the treausry in jesus name (amen).

  7. livingston

    The boko haram can go ahead to kill as many christians as they can, they can never be the first to massacre christians. They are only carrying out the task given to them by their father satan, and sooner or later they will receive a reward for their action. And let it be known to them that, no matter how much they massacre the christians, they are wasting their time because more souls will be continuously won for JESUS whether the world likes it or not.

  8. mrs o v

    Boko haram, it is better for u to repent and give ur life to christ, Jesus love u, he died for u.

  9. Ahmad

    Now that the prophet of the muslims, Mohamed is languishing in hell, I hope muslims the world over will take a cue and turn to christ

  10. samuel

    If Nigerian President actually said this ‘end time’ rumor,it is very unfortunate.It is a sign of surrender! .Even if is only one person killed,is it not an indication of security inadequacy?I am ashamed of the ineptitude of our president.He should resign if he cannot find solution to the challenges of administering Nigeria.He has shown helplessness and should vacate the position because he is obviously incompetent .

  11. sosolisol

    Ok,now: it is well. i will change things when I become your president in 2015; if I still find a soul to govern! Until then…

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