Published On: Tue, Dec 2nd, 2014

Boko Haram attacks Christian village, death toll unknown as thousands flee

The Christian town of Shani in Borno has been attacked by Boko Haram, the Islamic terrorist group, murdering citizens and displacing thousands.

Nigeria Boko Haram attacks map

Nigeria Boko Haram attacks map distrubted in 2012. Photo/wikimedia

A witness told Nigeria’s Daily Post that “some group of insurgents invaded the town at about 8 p.m. on Saturday and started shooting sporadically, targeting civilians, public buildings and recreational centres.”

“They came on about 10 motorcycles from Gwaskara axis, well armed with Ak47 rifles, improvised explosive devices and petrol bombs, wrecking havoc without confrontation as there was no military operatives, nor police to assist the armless civilians who were running for dear lives.”

The exact death toll is still unknown, a fact still confirmed in a new Reuters report, but a separate resident, Ishaya Brimah, said from the safety of a nearby village that the militants that attacked Shani numbered more than 30 men.

“They started throwing bombs into houses … then the Boko Haram fired shots at people fleeing,” Brimah continued. “They set ablaze the police station, houses and a telecom mast … I saw people fleeing, some bodies on the ground.”

Shopkeeper Shuabu Lawal added about the start of the attacks: “A boy ran into my shop and said his father and elder brother had been shot. He was only wearing shorts, no top and sweating despite the wintry weather. I shut down my shop immediately, leaving some items outside.”

Since 2009, the Sunni extremists have been raiding Nigerian towns and villages in a mission to establish an Islamic caliphate. The terrorists have often targeted Christians, who make up close to half of the nation’s population, and have sought to drive them out of the country.

Shani has been attacked twice more in the past few years. In 2011 the town suffered a terrorist attack by gunmen who attacked a national elections commission, murdering staff and destroying a police station.

The Divisional Police Headquarters was then burned down in June 2014 in new attacks by militants.

The United Nations has stood behind Nigeria in its fight against terrorism, with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon commentating on the bombing of the mosque and insisting that there is no justification for attacking civilians.

In a statement, Ban reaffirmed, “the full support of the U.N. to Nigeria’s efforts to fight terrorism and to provide security to the population consistent with international law and Nigeria’s human rights obligations.”

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- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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