Indian among 180 killed in Nigeria terror attacks blamed on Islamist Boko Haram group

Discussion in 'West Asia & Africa' started by Singh, Jan 23, 2012.

  1. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    Death Toll Goes Above 180


    Abuja: A 23-year-old Indian national was killed and six of his compatriots, including two children, were injured in a wave of coordinated bombings and gun attacks in Nigeria by an Islamic sect that left more than 180 people dead.
    Kevalkumar Kalidas Rajput from Dahod in Gujarat, who worked for Kano-based firm M/s Relchem, was among those killed in Friday's deadly attacks, a statement issued by the High
    Commission of India in Nigeria said today.

    It said Rajput and two of his co-employees from Nepal, Hari Prasad Bhusal and Raj Singh, lost their lives when their car entered a zone of hostilities.

    The High Commission said six other Indian nationals, including two small children, belonging to two families have received injuries from falling shrapnel and debris and are
    being treated in Kano hospitals.

    On Friday, militants shot at residents and security personnel and bombed security services offices in Kano, the second most populated city in Nigeria.

    In New Delhi, External Affairs Minister S M Krishna condemned the deadly attacks in Kano and regretted the "unfortunate" loss of life.

    The families of the Indian killed and those injured in the attacks have been contacted by authorities.

    In fresh attacks, at least 11 people were killed at diverse locations of Nigeria's northern city of Bauchi state early today.

    Sources in Tafawa Balewa community, where the attack occurred, say the Hausa-Fulani ethnic group would be blamed.

    Hospital sources in Nigeria said 180 bodies were piled up in a mortuary at Murtala Muhammed Specialist Hospital in Kano a day after the attacks, which were claimed to have been
    carried out by Islamic sect Boko Haram which is seeking imposition of 'Sharia' law in the country.

    They added that the number of the dead may increase because more bodies are being brought in from different parts of the city.

    A police source said he was yet to confirm the nationalities of a few dead persons confirmed to be foreigners.

    The bombings, which numbered up to 20, caused pandemonium in the metropolis and were followed by shoot-outs between the militants and security agencies especially at the eastern
    Bompai district of the city.
    The 20-hour curfew imposed in Kano has been relaxed even as President Goodluck Jonathan assured the international community that "all engaged in the act would be made to face
    the full wrath of the law."

    The president is set to visit the city to personally meet the families of the victims.

    Uneasy calm pervade the city today and many security checkpoints have been set up to verify new visitors to the city.

    Streets were almost deserted as bodies still litter the city and Red Cross and other aid agencies helped in taking them to mortuaries. Meanwhile, the High Commission of India has offered its condolences to the families of Rajput and his two Nepalese colleagues and also wished speedy recovery to injured Indians.

    "We also wish to take this opportunity to re-emphasise the need for Indian nationals to observe the terms of our Security Advisory issued on January 17, 2012. High Commission
    also reiterates its earlier advisory and requests Indian nationals to register themselves with the Mission," High Commissioner to Nigeria Mahesh Sachdev said.

    A spokesman of Boko Haram, Abul Qaqa, said his group was responsible for the attacks. He said they carried out the attacks because the government had refused to release members
    of the group held at various prisons in Kano.

    Boko Haram sect has been waging a bloody conflict to install an Islamic government and Sharia rule in the country.

    A suicide bombing by the group at the United Nations headquarters in Abuja in July last year had killed 26 persons.

    Condemning the multiple bombings in Kano, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon said the frequency of attacks in the West African country demonstrated "unacceptable disregard" for
    human life.

    "The Secretary-General condemns in the strongest terms the multiple attacks that have taken place across the northern Nigerian city of Kano, causing large-scale casualties and
    massive destruction to property," a statement from his spokesperson said in New York.

    It said Ban was "appalled" at the frequency and intensity of recent attacks in Nigeria, which demonstrated "a wanton and unacceptable disregard for human life."

    Recently, Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan had imposed curfew in some states of the country's Muslim-dominated north because of the activities of this militant group, but Kano State was not among those areas.

    Activities of Boko Haram has raised fears of religious conflict in the country, especially after the Christmas Day attacks that killed at least 40 persons in a church and
    several others parts of the north.

    Nigeria has a population of 150 million, with Muslims predominant in the north while Christians mostly live in the South.

    In Bauchi, fears of further clashes within the city have increased as an Islamic sect called JIBWIS and founded by late sheik Jafar Mahmud Adams was getting ready to announce its opposition for Boko Haram. Meanwhile, bomb explosions in two churches in the capital of the state, Bauchi, destroyed one while the other was left damaged. They occurred before Christians turned up for worships and casualties have not been recorded, a resident said.


    Read more at: Nigeria attacks: Death toll goes above 180
     
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  3. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    Nigeria Attacks: What Boko Haram Assault Means

    BBC News - Nigeria Attacks: What Boko Haram Assault Means



    Some thoughts on the implications of the devastating Kano bombings:

    - Boko Haram has shown, once again, that it keeps its promises. It warned several months ago that it would react violently if its jailed members were not released. "These are people who live up to their word," Nigerian human rights activist Shehu Sani told me.

    - The scale and coordination of the attacks reveal an organisation growing in confidence and ambition, and seemingly committed to a long-term insurgency.

    - The Nigerian authorities - routinely accused of mishandling and fuelling the insurgency through the heavy-handed actions of security forces - have reportedly allocated 25% of this year's national budget to defence. Many here fear that a strategy of confrontation, rather than dialogue, will condemn the region to long-term instability.

    - Claims that Boko Haram have received training from Somalia's Al Shabaab have been given added strength by the sophisticated nature of the operation.

    - Boko Haram may be a murky organisation with a range of targets and agendas - it has attacked Christians and the United Nations in recent months - but its main focus remains "the establishment" and the police in particular, which it blames for the 2009 killing, while in custody, of its former leader.

    - There is a widespread belief that sympathetic elements in the security forces are, at the very least, cooperating with Boko Haram. It remains difficult to know how true that is, and how much is paranoia/propaganda.

    - It's hard to gauge the level of public support the group enjoys. Millions in the north may share its goal of an Islamic state, but precious few have endorsed its violent tactics and many moderate Muslims have been targeted by it.

    - Prominent Muslim groups and local politicians have publicly condemned the attacks. However, many commentators believe those same people are content to sit on the side-lines, knowing that the violence puts extra pressure on a central government widely accused of favouring the south of the country over the predominantly Muslim north.

    - Nigeria seems unlikely to become an Islamic state. Warnings of disintegration also seem exaggerated. But Boko Haram has evolved into a serious security threat far more quickly than many had anticipated. Still, some analysts still feel President Jonathan may be misreading or exaggerating the group's strength for his own political/tribal purposes.

    - All this has badly shaken Nigeria. But this is still a dynamic, developing democracy with a booming economy and plenty of reasons for optimism


    BBC News - Nigeria attacks: What Boko Haram assault means
     
  4. Galaxy

    Galaxy Elite Member Elite Member

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    160 innocents killed in Nigeria by islamic terrorists. Yet terrorism has no religion. This happens when minority becomes majority.

    :rolleyes: :sad:
     
  5. Blackwater

    Blackwater Veteran Member Veteran Member

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    May not be Indian but person of Indian origin. Nigeria has lot of them
     
  6. Galaxy

    Galaxy Elite Member Elite Member

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    There are some Indian origin people living there since ages. Might be, Article is referring to that.
     
  7. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    Paaji, read the first post. An Indian national was caught in the crossfire.
     
  8. Galaxy

    Galaxy Elite Member Elite Member

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  9. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    World Muslims Condemn Nigeria Attacks - Africa - News

    WORLD CAPITALS – Muslim organizations worldwide have condemned bomb attacks on three Nigerian churches during a Christmas Mass, saying the attackers do not represent true Islam.

    "We condemn the unconscionable and inexcusable attacks on Nigerian churches and offer sincere condolences to the loved ones of those killed or injured,” the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) said in a press release obtained by OnIslam.net on Monday, December 26.

    "Only a strong demonstration of interfaith unity will show those behind the attacks that they will never achieve their goal of dividing society along religious lines."

    The world was rattled on Sunday by news about three attacks that targeted churches in Nigerian capital Abuja, killing at least 30 people and injuring scores.

    A radical Islamist group, Boko Haram, has claimed responsibility for the attacks.

    The radical group has been blamed for dozens of bombings and shootings in the north, and has claimed responsibility for two bombings in Abuja this year.

    Voicing strong Muslim condemnations for the terrorist attacks, Islamic Supreme Council of Canada founder, Imam Syed Soharwardy, has spoken out against the church bombings in Nigeria.

    "This is an extremely deplorable crime … It's not Islam. This is an un-Islamic action", said Imam Soharwardy.

    “On the day of Christmas this terrorism is worse of its kind. The attacks on churches while Christians were praying and celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ cannot be done by anyone who knows and follows Islam, the group said in a media release published by CTV Calgary.

    “We remind the media and the people that the group who has claimed the responsibility, Boko Haram is a Wahabi group. We do not consider these people to be the true followers of Islam.”

    “Islamic Supreme Council of Canada expresses deep sadness on the loss of innocent lives. We stand shoulder to shoulder with the worldwide Christian community in solidarity against this violence,” Imam Soharwardy added.

    Meanwhile, the Islamic Supreme Council of Canada planned a Calgary memorial service for the victims of the Nigerian church bombings on Christmas day at Green Dome Islamic School and Mosque in the northeast.

    Un-Islamic

    The Muslim Council of Britain had said in a statement that faithful Muslims should not tolerate attacks on houses of worship, including those of Christians.

    "There is nothing in our faith of Islam that can condone attacks on places of worship or on Christians as we have seen today,” MCB secretary general Farooq Murad said in a statement published by Express newspaper.

    "The attacks take place at the most important celebrations for Christians, it is offensive and Muslims condemn such actions. It threatens the fragile state of relations between Muslims and Christians, which has been peaceful in the past,” he added.

    "Sectarian attacks as we have seen in Nigeria and in Iraq last week are reprehensible - people who claim to carry out such carnage in the name of Islam are completely mistaken and are as much enemy of Muslims as anyone else."

    In Malaysia, Pan-Malaysia Islamic Party (PAS) slammed Nigeria’s Christmas Day church bombings.

    “PAS, together with the international community, condemns the church attacks in the strongest terms possible,” the party’s international committee chair Kamarudin Jaffar told Harakah daily on Tuesday, December 26.

    “We also support the statement made by the Muslim Council of Britain condemning the attacks.”

    Muslim scholars have repeatedly slammed terrorist attacks on civilians of any religion.

    In 2008, thousands of Muslim scholars from across India denounced terrorism as a violation of Islamic teachings, calling it the “biggest crime as per Qur'an."

    Another Britain-based Muslim scholar, Sheikh Tahir ul-Qadri, issued a 600-page fatwa in May 2011, condemning suicide bombings, kidnappings and the killing of innocent people as “absolutely against the teachings of Islam”.
     
  10. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    Nigeria: Muslim Leaders Condemn Bombings

    Abuja, Kaduna, Sokoto, Ibadan, Ilorin — The umbrella Islamic body for Muslims in the North, the Jama'atu Nasril Islam (JNI), yesterday condemned the bombing of St. Theresa's Catholic Church, Madalla, Niger State and another church in Jos, Plateau State, saying it is not in a religious war against Christians. Both incidents claimed the lives of over 40 persons.

    But the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in the 19 Northern states and FCT warned yesterday that the attacks may spark a religious war.

    Secretary General of JNI, Dr. Khalid Abubakar Aliyu, while reacting to the bombings in a telephone interview with THISDAY, said Islam, as a religion, respects human lives and would do everything to preserve it.

    "Human lives must be preserved and protected by all including security agencies; it is rather unfortunate that Nigerians are losing their lives to bomb blasts," Aliyu said.

    The Islamic body also tasked security agencies to fish out the perpetrators and bring them to justice, stressing that it is only when the culprits are fished out and punitive measures taken against them that it would serve as deterrent to others planning to carry out such nefarious activities.

    In his reaction, the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa'ad Abubakar III, who joined other Muslims in voicing condemnation against Boko Haram, said taking of human lives in the name of religion was strange in Islam.

    The sultan, at the formal opening of Islamic Vacation Course (IVC) organised by Muslim Students' Society of Nigeria (MSSN), B-Zone, said dispute could only be resolved through dialogue and not by violence or bloodbath.

    He said Islam abhorred violence and called for unity among Muslims to address the challenges facing them.

    "Violence is not part of the tenets of Islam and would never be allowed to tarnish the image of the religion," the sultan said.

    Chastising Boko Haram, another Islamic group, Muslim Public Affairs Centre (MPAC), said "cold blooded murder of innocent worshippers" was "horrifying and sickening".

    In a statement by its Director of Media and Communications, Disu Kamor, MPAC described the perpetrators of the dastardly act as "criminal and devilish hate cultists bent on imposing their evil ideology on us".

    "On this occasion and in similar incidents, Nigerian Muslims and Muslims everywhere stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our Christian brothers and sisters and we are determined to continue to work together to remove the mischief of those seeking to destroy peaceful co-existence and harmony. We feel the sorrow and share the grief of all that were affected by this tragedy - this evil attack is a crime committed against mankind," MPAC added.

    Also, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) said it is "shocked and petrified by this development".

    MURIC in a statement by Dr. Ishaq Akintola disagreed with Boko Haram, which had said it carried out the attack to avenge the killing of Muslims during the last Sallah.

    He said: "The attackers cannot claim that they were revenging the attack on Muslims in Jos during the last Eid el-Fitr on August 30, 2011 which left many Muslims dead because Christians celebrating Christmas earlier on December 25, 2010 were the first to be killed in bomb explosions.

    "Nothing in the scriptures of Islam justifies this kind of attack. We therefore assert clearly, unequivocally and unambiguously that Boko Haram is not fighting for Nigerian Muslims."

    Similarly, the Chairman of the Sokoto State chapter of Izalat Bida'a Waikamtul Sunnah (JIBWIS), Sheikh Abubakar Usman Mabera, said the killing of innocent citizens, under any guise, is a case of murder and in contrast to Islamic teachings.

    "Whoever takes the life of a fellow human being has committed evil irrespective of his religion - whether Christian or Muslim - and will pay for his sins. So, this is an act of terrorism which is against Islamic teachings," he said.

    Mabera, who frowned on the act, said: "Almighty Allah forbids the killing of a fellow human being. Whoever thinks that he is carrying out Jihad by destroying places of worship and killing innocent citizens is ignorant of Islam because the religion forbids that."

    The Muslim Congress frowned on the Madalla blast and said the continued killing of innocent Nigerians by the activities of Boko Haram is uncalled for and should be condemned by all Nigerians.

    The Amir of the Congress, Mallam Abdulraheem Lukman, said in a statement that: "The endemic killings can best be described as inhuman, wicked, condemnable and totally unacceptable in civilised societies.

    "The action is even more repulsive during the periods of celebrations and this is highly condemnable."

    CAN in the 19 Northern states and Abuja has warned that attacks on churches by Boko Haram are capable of igniting a religious war in the country.

    But labour unions in the country have urged Christians not to retaliate the Christmas attacks on churches in Niger, Plateau and Yobe States which left scores of people dead.

    The pan-Northern Nigeria group, Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF), also condemned the attacks yesterday, warning that they serve no good in the prevailing circumstances.

    At a news conference in Kaduna yesterday, Secretary-General of Northern CAN, Elder Saidu Dogo, said the bombing of churches and killing of Christians was an invitation to religious war in Nigeria.

    Dogo urged Islamic leaders to call the perpetrators of the dastardly act to order to avert confrontation, saying that no group should push the other to the wall to fan the ember of religious war.

    He said if the authorities fail to track down those behind the killings of innocent Nigerians, "we shall henceforth in the midst of these provocations and wanton destruction of innocent lives and property be compelled to make our own efforts and arrangements to protect the lives of innocent Christians and peace-loving citizens of this country".

    While calling on Christians to be law abiding, he expressed the need for them to defend themselves whenever the need arises.

    He called on the Muslim Umma and Ulamas in Nigeria "to live up to their responsibilities by calling to order, all Islamic sects in the country to have respect for human lives and stop these killings. For we fear that the situation may degenerate to a religious war and Nigeria may not be able to survive as one. Once again, enough is enough".

    "We appreciate the efforts of the Federal Government and its security agents in trying to curtail these attacks. However, we are piqued that the efforts of government are being undermined by the sponsors of the Islamic fundamentalists in the North.

    "We are particularly disturbed that the perpetrators of these dastardly acts and their sponsors are well known to government and no serious or decisive actions have been taken to stem their nefarious activities.

    "The Federal and state Governments of Niger, Plateau, Bauchi, Gombe, Kaduna, Borno, Yobe, Adamawa and such other areas that these wanton destruction of lives and property have been or are being perpetrated, should arrest and bring to book all the perpetrators and their sponsors.

    "Government at all levels should provide 24 hours security services to all churches, Christian religious institutions and organisations in the county, especially in the North.

    "We are also calling on the federal and state governments to urgently stem these massacres of Christians and the destruction of their churches and property in the North. The attacks so far have proved that some Islamic fundamentalists want to exterminate Christianity in the Northern states. We are assuring all Christians that the church will not allow that to happen," Dogo said.

    The ACF, on its part, condemned the frequent explosions, saying the Christmas attacks were capable of diverting attention to religious crises that would serve no one good.

    The forum, in a statement emailed to THISDAY by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Anthony Sani, urged Boko Haram to embrace dialogue in pursuit of the resolution of whatever grievances it had with the authorities, stressing that the bombings and killing of innocent Nigerians and destruction of property were misguided.

    "The spate of bomb blasts on Christmas day, which were directed at places of worship across some parts of the North, is a serious source of concern to Arewa Consultative Forum, to Northern Leaders and to the good people of the North, indeed, to patriotic Nigerians.

    "Source of concern not because past bombings were less serious but because those on the Christmas day are capable of diverting attention to religious crises that would serve no one, including the perpetrators, any good now and for a long time to come.

    "Consequently, ACF calls on the perpetrators of violence to stop forthwith and avail themselves to due process of addressing perceived grievances that are in place.

    "ACF also wishes to say killing of innocent Nigerians is not correct and offends God and many people's sense of justice. This is because a good number of those who go to places of worship are not lettered in either Western or Islamic education.

    "More so that Western education is not necessarily the cause of the collapse of national ideals, moral values and cause of indiscipline in the polity, since there are examples of Muslim countries and Christian countries with western education that are morally sound. Turkey belongs to the former and Nordic country of Norway belongs to the later.

    "Nigerians of all faiths must therefore come together and confront corruption in all ramifications by inspiring cultural renaissance for collective good. Corruption in Nigeria is not an exclusive preserve of Western education but a national malaise that should be confronted by all, and not government alone. Enough of the bombings and killing of innocent Nigerians," the ACF said.

    The Trade Union Congress (TUC) warned that there are certain disgruntled elements in the polity who want to divide Nigeria along sectarian lines.

    President General of the TUC, Comrade Peter Esele, in a telephone conversation with THISDAY in Abuja yesterday, appealed to Nigerians, especially Christians, to be calm and avoid being incited to reprisal.

    He added that it was necessary for Nigerians to stay united at these critical moments and not to allow any plot that is aimed at dividing the country along religious or ethnic lines to succeed.

    The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) called on the Federal Government to make the fight against crime and terrorism its priority rather than diverting the attention of Nigerians with its debate on the need to remove fuel subsidy.

    It added that it is necessary that the root causes of insecurity - poverty and unemployment - be addressed as budgeting huge sums of money for security would not solve the problem.

    In a statement yesterday, the Acting General Secretary of the NLC, Comrade Owei Lakemfa, condemned the attacks in strongest terms, describing the perpetrators as "terrorists whose minds are as blurred as their vision".

    He called on Nigerians not to be deterred by the terrorists or give up on building a peaceful and united country where the will of the people would prevail.
     

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