That detail is left out of the BBC report below, as it is standard for the mainstream media to make every effort to downplay “sectarian” violence as the product of mutual “tensions,” preferring to implicate organized religion, tribalism, or “extremism” in general rather than the stated intentions of one group and its scriptures (the Qur’an, that is) against another. This report shows the targeted nature of the rampage. “Muslim Attackers Kill Fifteen Christians in Nigeria,” from International Christian Concern, May 7:
Washington — International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that today Muslim attackers killed 17 Christians, including the wife and three children of a pastor, and burned down several Christian homes in the village of Kurum, Bauchi State, Nigeria.
“It is not right for anyone to kill another person. Life is precious and a gift from God. Since 1999 in Bauchi state, several Christians have been killed but no one has been brought before justice. The government has to intervene. The government has to be fair to all its citizens,” said Reverend Turbe Ngodem in an interview with ICC. Reverend Ngodem is the General Secretary of Christian Association of Nigeria in Bauchi State.
Since the introduction of Sharia law in northern Nigeria in 1999, thousands of Christians have been killed by Muslim radicals in an unrelenting series of regular attacks. The local Muslim government officials have failed to bring the perpetrators to justice.
Jonathan Racho, ICC’s Regional Manager for Africa, said, “We are extremely concerned with this latest killing of Christians by Muslim attackers. We once again urge Nigerian officials to prevent the bloodshed of innocent Christians in northern Nigeria. Nigeria must end impunity for the perpetrators of these heinous crimes.”
And from the BBC, “Nigeria: Deadly attack on northern village,” May 7:
At least 16 people have been killed in an attack on a predominantly Christian village in northern Nigeria.
Police said late on Friday that unidentified assailants had also burnt a number of houses in the village in Bauchi state, near Tafawa Balewa.
Bauchi is in Nigeria’s middle belt, where the predominantly Muslim north meets the mainly Christian south.
Presenting the symptoms as the underlying cause:
There are long-standing tensions in the area rooted in power struggles and land disputes, correspondents say.
This has caused violence in the past between indigenous Christian or animist groups, and Muslim settlers from the North.
Hundreds have died in clashes in Nigeria following national elections last month in which Goodluck Jonathan, a southern Christian, won the presidential poll against a Muslim, Muhammadu Buhari.
The worst of the violence was in Bauchi and Kaduna states.