Muslim youths destroy Catholic Church, property, attack worshippers in Niger state

Muslim youths on Friday attacked St. Philip’s Catholic Parish, Baki Iku, close to Zuma Rock in Niger State.

According to eyewitnesses, some Catholics had gone to the church to pray when they were attacked by the Muslims who claimed that Friday was their day of prayer and that the church only had right to worship on Sundays.

The youths were said to have destroyed the church’s property, including doors and the windows.

Some soldiers managed to get there later, but not before harm had been done to the building.

Worshippers ran away in different directions to avoid being killed. Rev. Fr. Luka Sylvester Gopep, the Vicar-General of the Diocese, confirmed the incident.

Gopep said: “Sometime around 2pm, some Muslim youths in their hundreds left their mosque after their Friday Jumat prayer and rushed to the church premises, climbed the wall and destroyed everything in the church: the windows, the altar, musical instruments, the chapel.

“The security man in the church premises was beaten to pulp.

“Some women who were holding a prayer meeting were chased away.

“The seminarian who is resident in the premises was also beaten up and chased away.”

Niger State Police Command spokesman, Bala Elkana, confirmed the story, adding, however, that no life was lost.

He said the prompt response of the police stopped the situation from escalating.

Source: Vanguard

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