Herdsmen Kill Pastor, Five other Christians in Central Nigeria

Location of Nasarawa state, Nigeria. (Creative Commons)

ABUJA, Nigeria (Christian Daily InternationalMorning Star News) – Fulani herdsmen killed a pastor and five other Christians in Nasarawa state, central Nigeria in attacks on Friday (March 22) and Sunday (March 24), sources said.

In Keana County’s Kadarko area, community leader Denis Utsa said Fulani herdsmen on Friday attacked the predominantly Christian village of Tse-Abir Azer on Friday (March 22), shooting two Christians to death, including a pastor who died the next day.

“The armed Muslim Fulani herdsmen invaded the Tse-Abir Azer area of Kadarko at about 4 p.m., and aside from those killed, dozens of other Christians sustained gunshot wounds,” Utsa told Christian Daily International-Morning Star News in a text message. “A pastor, Kingsley Orshase, who was shot and injured by the terrorists, was conveyed to a hospital in Lafia on Saturday but died at the hospital due to the fatal wounds he sustained.”

On Sunday (March 24) the assailants killed four Christian farmers in the Kadarko area in a second round of attacks, he said.

“The death toll now stands at six Christians killed in the two days of attacks,” Utsa said. “The terrorists also invaded a camp housing displaced Christians, forcing them to flee to Kadarko and Giza towns in the Keana Local Government Area. Some of these displaced Christians sustained life-threatening injuries, and they’re being treated in some hospitals.”

Ramhan Nansel, spokesperson for Nasarawa State Police Command, told Christian Daily International-Morning Star News that officers have been deployed to the area to curtail attacks.

Nigeria remained the deadliest place in the world to follow Christ, with 4,118 people killed for their faith from Oct. 1, 2022 to Sept. 30, 2023, according to Open Doors’ 2024 World Watch List (WWL) report. More kidnappings of Christians than in any other country also took place in Nigeria, with 3,300.

Nigeria was also the third highest country in number of attacks on churches and other Christian buildings such as hospitals, schools, and cemeteries, with 750, according to the report.

In the 2024 WWL of the countries where it is most difficult to be a Christian, Nigeria was ranked No. 6, as it was in the previous year.

Numbering in the millions across Nigeria and the Sahel, predominantly Muslim Fulani comprise hundreds of clans of many different lineages who do not hold extremist views, but some Fulani do adhere to radical Islamist ideology, the United Kingdom’s All-Party Parliamentary Group for International Freedom or Belief (APPG) noted in a 2020 report.

“They adopt a comparable strategy to Boko Haram and ISWAP and demonstrate a clear intent to target Christians and potent symbols of Christian identity,” the APPG report states.

Christian leaders in Nigeria have said they believe herdsmen attacks on Christian communities in Nigeria’s Middle Belt are inspired by their desire to forcefully take over Christians’ lands and impose Islam as desertification has made it difficult for them to sustain their herds.

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The post Herdsmen Kill Pastor, Five other Christians in Central Nigeria appeared first on Morningstar News.

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