Displaying items by tag: abductions
Bullets fly overhead as schoolboys scream out in fear. Chaos. Shrapnel. Hundreds go missing. This was the scene last week when Boko Haram militants stormed a high-school in Katsina, northern Nigeria, to abduct hundreds of students, 400 remain missing. It is a horror story reminiscent of the 2014 kidnapping of schoolgirls that prompted the viral #BringBackOurGirls campaign. The attack came just weeks after the brutal slaying of Nigerian farmers in Borno state by militants on motorcycles (thirty were beheaded). Nigeria's population is 50% Christian and 50% Muslim with groups like Boko Haram subscribing to a warped interpretation of Islam that justifies murder of Christians. In practice, both Christians and Muslims have been targeted in recent years. Pray for the government to improve its standards and protect vulnerable communities. Pray the authorities will also terminate the Special Anti-Robbery Squad’s contract to end the torture and extrajudicial killings that it has engaged in. STOP PRESS: it has now been reported that all the schoolboys have been released by Boko Haram. See
Over 200 people including women and children were abducted and a church mission hospital and shops were looted when Islamist extremists raided the town of Boga, in this majority-Christian country. Bishop William Bahemuka said the Muslim ADF militia had attacked the town in the early hours. During the three-hour assault, there are conflicting reports about how much the army resisted the militants, as no casualties were reported. People are terrified. Families are traumatised and grieving over their abducted loved ones. The ADF has never been active in Boga, so people are confused and can’t understand the current situation. Bishop Bahemuka said, ‘I appeal to people of good will everywhere to lobby their home governments to put pressure on our government to stabilise the security situation. We also appeal for a massive outpouring of sustained prayer from Christians everywhere.’
Malaysia’s human rights commission claims that both Pastor Raymond Koh (in 2017) and Amri Che Mat, a Muslim social activist (in 2016), were victims of state-sponsored enforced disappearances, carried out by a police unit. Church leaders are calling on the government to clarify and separate the jurisdictions of the religious authorities and the police, and for an immediate independent, impartial investigation into both cases, ‘free of conflict of interest’. Eyewitness accounts in both cases reported that the men were kidnapped as they travelled in cars which were boxed in by three other vehicles. A car owned by a Special Branch officer, who has now gone missing, was at the scene of both attacks. The two men are amongst many people who have ‘disappeared’ in recent years. The government’s 2018 general election manifesto promised to uphold the rule of law, stating that ‘all citizens will be treated equally before the law’.