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(LifeSiteNews) — A new report detailing the atrocities of the persecution of Christians in Nigeria reveals that more than 8,000 Christians were killed in 2023 by Islamic militants in a bloodbath that international watchdogs are calling an ongoing genocide.

The International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law (InterSociety) recently published an in-depth report on the Islamic persecution of Christians that states that Nigeria is the “second deadliest genocide country (150,000 deaths since 2009) after Syria’s 306,000 deaths since 2011,” and “is second in the world list of ‘Fourteen Genocides’ (ongoing) and ‘Seven Warning Genocides.’”

According to a February 14 international investigative report conducted by InterSociety, “The Nigerian death toll would have been more than five times higher than those of Syria if the country had engaged in open genocidal warfare-with over 200m citizens. The massacre of Christians in Nigeria is now dubbed ‘Silent Genocide’ or ‘Jihadist Genocide of Christians.’”

READ: Nigerian bishop speaks out against ‘atrocities’ of ongoing Islamic persecution against Christians

The report details that “killings and associated grisly and egregious violence against persons or groups and properties of international coloration, perpetrated on the grounds of ethnicity and religion accounted for over 150,000 defenseless civilian deaths since 2009, leading to burning down or wanton destruction of tens of thousands of civilian dwelling houses, over 18,500 Sacred Places of Christian Worship, 1000 Traditional Religious Sanctuaries and 2,500 Christian/Traditional Learning Centers during which over 59,000 square kilometers of land mass (twice the size of South-East Nigeria) ancestrally belonging to indigenous Christians and non-Muslim others were seized and their owners uprooted and sacked in at least ten States.”

Breaking down the death-toll, the report states, “The over 150,000 religiously related deaths in Nigeria in fifteen years had included ‘direct deaths’ of at least 100,000 and ‘indirect deaths’ of 50,000. Among the over 50,000 ‘indirect deaths’ were those abducted and killed in captivity by various Islamic Jihadists, classified as ‘victims of the enforced disappearances.’”

Regarding this last group, InterSociety pointed out internationally, “in Law and Criminology, ‘Enforced Disappearances’ and ‘Torture’ have no excuses or exonerative defenses at perpetration and can be perpetrated by state actors or non-state actors or someone or individuals sanctioned by a state actor or state actors.”

Detailing the number of deaths in 2023 according to those responsible, InterSociety stated that “the combined forces of the Government protected Islamic Jihadists and the country’s Security Forces (NSFc) are directly and vicariously accountable for hacking to death in 2023 of no fewer than 8,222 defenseless Christians covering a period of 13 months or Jan (2023)-Jan (2024), out of which Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen were responsible for at least 5,100 Christian deaths, Boko Haram and their allies 500 deaths, Jihadist Fulani Bandits 1,600 deaths and ‘Islamic-inspired’ security forces 1000 Christian deaths.”

“The death of 8,222 defenseless Christians and abduction of over 8,400 others in 13 months or Jan 1, 2023 to Jan 1, 2024 marked the deadliest in recent years principally occasioned by woeful failure of the Government of Nigeria and the country’s security forces to rise to the occasion and tacit support and protection they are strongly and widely believed to have rendered to the Jihadists(,) particularly the Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen politically and financially backed by the Miyatti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) and the Fulani Nationality Movement (FUNAM).”

The report further revealed that “not less than 70 Christian clerics and 100 Traditional Religious Priests were attacked and abducted in 2023 alone, out of which at least 25 pastors and priests were killed including three Catholic Priests and over 20 Pentecostal and Baptist Pastors and Prophets of the African Instituted Churches.”

READ: Nigerian Benedictine describes kidnapping, torture in Muslim captivity

In Nigeria’s Southeast region in 2023, “victims were arrested by security forces unarmed in their homes or workplaces or on their way going to work or returning home or at sleep and killed or abducted and disappeared without official records under situation of false labeling and class criminalization, perpetrated on the grounds of ethnicity and religion.” InterSociety further noted that “not less than 30% of the anti-Christian killings in Nigeria and associated property violence are not reported and have been classified as ‘dark figures of crime.’”

Decrying the open manner in which the genocide against Nigerian Christians is being conducted, InterSociety declared, “The most shocking of it all is that the Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen operate freely and unchallenged with impunity and reckless abandon, with the Nigerian Security Forces (NSFs), widely accused of being ‘Islamic-inspired,’ turning blind eyes or looking the other side, except when it comes to protection of Fulani cows and their herders, or arresting members of the victim communities and their leaders, labeling them ‘bandits.’”

Contrasting, on the one hand, the quick arrest and detainment under torture of those falsely accused of a murder of a Fulani leader, with, on the other hand, the blind eye turned toward the wholesale daily massacre of Nigerian Christians by the Fulani militants, InterSociety lamented that “if the Nigerian Military, Police and other security agencies (were to) have responded with the same speed, swiftness, promptness and zeal (as in the case of Plateau Fulani Leader’s alleged premeditated murder) when defenseless Christians are massacred or facing threats of massacre and property violence anywhere in Nigeria… then the systematic and well-coordinated massacre of Christians in the country or any part thereof would have been substantially checkmated and reduced to the barest minimum, if not totally brought to an end.”

With the numbers of abductions in 2023 roughly equal to the death toll, the report revealed that “no fewer than 8,400 defenseless Christians were abducted in 2023 across Nigeria by Islamic Jihadists and some say; ‘Islamic-inspired security forces,’ out of which about 10% or roughly 840 never returned alive till date and are strongly believed to have been killed in captivity by their captors.” Putting those numbers in perspective the report stated, “the above represented monthly abduction(s) of 700 and 24 on daily basis.”

Addressing false narratives pushed by Nigeria’s Islamic government circulated by left-wing western media, InterSociety emphatically denied that the anti-Christian genocide taking place throughout the country was anything other than a “systematic, well-coordinated and premeditated” “massacre of Christians.”

They wrote, “It is therefore totally untrue that the killing of Christians in Nigeria and seizure of their ancestral farmlands and wanton destruction or burning down of their sacred places of worship and learning were as a result of ‘climate change’ or ‘herders-farmers’ clashes’ or ‘cow rustling’ (Nigerian military latest Fulani cattle defensive false narrative) or ‘struggle for the control of mineral resources’ (latest Nigerian Government sponsored international diversionary false narrative).”

“Intersociety is expertly seeing all of the above as part of the Nigerian Government’s international diversionary and distractive strategies and three out of the over 40 false narratives promoted by the former Government of Retired Major Gen Muhammad Buhari and continued by the present Central Government of Nigeria under ‘Muslim-Muslim Presidential Ticket.’”

“The above is to say that the massacre of Christians in Nigeria is unmistakably systematic, well-coordinated and premeditated, a fundamental part of the ‘State Jihadism Project’ promoted to the State level since July 2015.”

READ: Report claims Muslims are persecuted by Christians in Nigeria despite evidence indicating the opposite is true

InterSociety concluded by demanding an investigation and intervention by the United Nations and international pressure by western countries to end the ongoing religious genocide. They called for “as a matter of extreme urgency,” “the appointment of the U.N. Secretary General’s Special Emergency Envoy on Nigeria and U.N. Security Council Resolution authorizing comprehensive U.N.-backed Commission of Inquiry or International Investigation into systematic and well-coordinated ethno-religious attacks by Government-protected Islamic Jihadists on defenseless Christians and others and their sacred places of worship and learning, dwelling houses and means of livelihood (.i.e. farmlands) and associated displacements, depopulation, forced migrations, evictions, lootings and dispossessions, all arising from murders, attempted murders, abductions, enforced disappearances, torture, sexual violence, forced faith conversions, burning and destruction of symbols of worship, etc.”

“All of the above have been found to have violated the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and their protocols and other international human rights and humanitarian laws or conventions,” InterSociety declared.

The report comes as U.S. lawmakers pressure the White House to “designate Nigeria as one of the world’s severe religious freedom violators” and to place it back on the list Countries of Particular Concern in its International Religious Freedom reports.


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