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World >

Violence spreads in Nigeria

by a staff reporter

PA

Click to enlarge

Gutted: A man walks past a burnt out building following an attack by Boko Haram in Bama, last month. The attack left 115 people dead, more than 1,500 buildings razed and 400 vehicles destroyed

Credit: PA

Gutted: A man walks past a burnt out building following an attack by Boko Haram in Bama, last month. The attack left 115 people dead, more than 1,500 buildings razed and 400 vehicles destroyed

CHRISTIAN villagers in northern Nigeria have described attacks by Fulani herdsmen. Their reports come amid warnings that the violence is spreading southwards.

On Friday of last week, Release International published a transcript of a recording of interviews with survivors of attacks in Plateau state in central Nigeria. One man, Samuel, described how eight members of his family had been burned alive in their home in an overnight attack. Survivors reported that security forces had collaborated in the attacks.

Release International has warned that "the Fulani are getting better organised and better armed, and their attacks are spreading to the south." It cites an "alarming rise in attacks in the more southerly Benue state".

On Tuesday of last week, the Barnabas Fund reported that at least 119 people had been killed in attacks on three Christian villages in Kaduna state, in the north, in which hundreds of homes and some churches were set alight. It reports that the attacks were perpetrated by ethnic Fulani Muslim herdsmen, armed with guns and machetes.

The violence is not linked to the ongoing attacks by Boko Haram, a group linked to al-Qaeda, which wants to impose sharia in northern Nigeria.

On Saturday, at least 20 people were killed after a bomb was detonated in a marketplace in Bama, Borno state. It is suspected to be the work of Boko Haram. On Friday, the state shut all of its schools after an attack last month in which dozens of pupils were killed.

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