Deadly attacks in Nigeria - How are our partners doing?

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People flee after the attack. Photo: Yakubu Joseph/Mission 21

Attackers raided several villages in central Nigeria over the Christmas holidays and killed numerous people. Reports from our partners on the ground now reveal the extent of the violence and destruction: over 280 people lost their lives and around 450 were injured. Several thousand had to flee. Our partners report that help is urgently needed.

Over the Christmas holidays, armed groups attacked several rural communities in central Nigeria. In Plateau State, the perpetrators carried out attacks on a total of 23 different communities in the local government areas of Mangu, Bokkos and Barkin Ladi between December 23 and 25, 2023.

The sometimes bloody conflict between the Christian farming population and Muslim pastoralists, which is exacerbated by global warming, also affects regions in which Mission 21 and our partners carry out projects. The regions lie on the border between the predominantly Muslim north and the Christian south and have thus become the scene of the most recent attacks.

Great suffering, massive destruction

Our coordinator Yakubu Joseph reports over 280 fatalities. Over 450 people suffered injuries; most of the injured were treated in hospitals in Mangu, Bokkos, Jos and Barkin Ladi. Countless houses were set on fire.

The attacks came as a surprise to the people in the regions; Markus Amorudu from Mushu reports that the attacks began while the people were still asleep. As a result, many of them had to flee unprepared. There are now four camps for internally displaced persons, housing people from a total of 690 households.

More support for peacebuilding required

The people in the affected regions, both those who have fled and those who have stayed behind in the villages, are now in urgent need of essential goods such as food, mattresses, cooking utensils, water canisters and clothing. Psychosocial support after the trauma they have suffered is also essential. In the long term, support is needed above all to rebuild the destroyed houses and safely resettle the people in their villages.

Coordinator Yakubu Joseph emphasizes that peacebuilding also plays a central role in preventing such attacks. Our partners are promoting healing and reconciliation with a project that aims to restore justice in former hotspots of violence - and it is having an impact: There is now a relatively stable peace in these places.

However, peacebuilding is a long-term project, which is why, in addition to donations for emergency aid, we also rely on your support to continue strengthening our partners in this important project.

► More about the interfaith peacebuilding project in Nigeria

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Protestant Mission Basel

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