Christmas Day decapitations call for coordinated international action

(After the release by Boko Haram of a video showing their Christmas Day beheading of ten Christians and one Muslim man in Nigeria, Mr. Ayo Adedoyin, Executive Director of the International Organisation for Peace and Social Justice (PSJ), calls for the international community to come together in bringing peace and security for the people of Nigeria.)   In the runup to Christmas, I wrote an article in The Sunday Express urging prayers for the Christians who fear Christmas. Sadly, the violent perpetrators struck again over the festive period. On behalf of PSJ UK, an organization dedicated to promoting peace, with a current focus on Nigeria and to breaking the silence surrounding the ongoing persecutions and massacres of religious minorities (particularly Christians in the North Eastern and Middle belt regions of Nigeria), I strongly condemn the barbaric attack on Kwaragulum village in Chibok LGA of Borno state and the execution by beheading of the ten Christians and one Muslim men which took place in Nigeria on Christmas eve and Christmas Day. This constant fear of attacks and the total regression of humanity is a reality that Christians and religious minorities in parts of Nigeria are faced with daily. The Christmas Day beheadings were claimed by Islamic State, West Africa Province (a splinter group off Boko Haram), but brutal acts of the same nature, claiming lives of innocent people and denying others the freedom to religious belief or none and the right to a peaceful existence, continue to be carried out by Boko Haram and Fulani militant terrorists elsewhere in the country too. There is clearly an international dimension to these atrocities with the Christmas Day murderers claiming that their action was in ‘revenge’ for the killing of Al-Baghdadi in Syria. In order for these terrorist killings to stop, the Nigerian government must take forceful preventative and reactionary action against any such perpetrators. Christians in North-east and middle belt Nigeria continue to be victims of violence and terror on multiple fronts and it is time for the international community of nations to put all our resources in motion to defeat these terrorists in order to bring peace and security to Nigeria.   Ayo ADEDOYIN Executive Director of PSJ

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