Nigerian terrorist group Boko Haram has kidnapped at least 40 boys and young men from a village in the state of Borno following a major raid. The victims, believed to be aged from 10 to 23 years old, are likely to be trained to fight for the jihadists.
CNN reported on Sunday that Boko Haram attacked the village of Malari with assault rifles last week, preaching extreme Islamic ideology to the locals and taking 40 people hostage, before moving on to the Sambisa forest.
The militants, who have been waging war on the government and the Christian population for over five years now, are known for their violent attacks and mass kidnappings. In April, they seized over 200 schoolgirls from the town of Chibok, an incident which sparked international outrage. more >>
A suicide bomber blew himself up just outside of an evangelical church in Nigeria Thursday morning.
The blast injured several people at a sanctuary located in the Nigerian city of Gombe, according to residents and a rescue worker.
"There was an explosion outside the ECWA church this morning. A suicide bomber who was restrained from getting into the church blew himself up," said Abubakar Yakubu, the head of the Nigeria Red Cross in Gombe. "Luckily no one was killed but some people were mildly injured." more >>
The Nigerian Security Network, an organization monitoring the casualties surrounding the Boko Haram insurgency, estimates that 2014 was the deadliest year so far in the terrorist group's five year insurgency in Northeast Nigeria.
According to World Bulletin, the monitoring group estimates that over 9,000 people have been killed as a result of Boko Haram violence in 2014, while over 1.5 million people have been displaced from their homes due to the conflict.
Additionally, the group estimates that 940 people were killed by insurgent attacks in just the month of November alone, while May saw the highest death toll of any month when over 4,000 deaths were tallied due to the violent insurgency. more >>
Andrew Palau, the son of famous evangelist Luis Palau, worked with 800 Christian churches to reach over 35,000 people in a series of major events in December in Burkina Faso, with a mission to bring hope to the troubled African nation.
Palau said that the response to the evangelistic message was "remarkable."
"We had people coming up to us asking how to accept Christ and wanting to do so throughout the week, Zacchaeus-like moments," he said. more >>
The al Shabaab terrorist group in Somalia is claiming responsibility for the Christmas day attack on the African Union base in Mogadishu that killed at least three peacekeepers and a civilian contractor last Thursday.
At least eight al Shabaab gunmen infiltrated the base and carried out the attack, which was initiated while the AU base was hosting a Christmas party. The al-Qaeda-linked extremist group's military operations spokesman, Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab, told Reuters that the barrage was specifically designated to be carried out while Christmas was being celebrated on the base.
"We targeted the enemies at a time they were celebrating Christmas," Musab said. more >>
Christians in Nigeria reportedly celebrated Christmas in good numbers despite the constant threats of attacks, including suicide bombings, by terror group Boko Haram, which has destroyed churches and slaughtered entire congregations throughout the years. Many who celebrated the holiday at churches are internally displaced people, who no longer have any homes to go to.
Fr. Gideon Obasogie, director of communications of the Diocese of Maiduguri, told Fides News Agency that despite fears of terrorist attacks, "the Catholic faithful went to Christmas Mass, majority of whom are IDPs from the Adamawa part of the diocese (Pulka, Madagali, Gulak, MichiKa, Mubi), to express their faith in an eloquent manner."
Boko Haram has been attacking Nigerian government and church buildings for over five years now, often targeting the country's Christians who make up close to half of the population. The militants have made it their mission to establish Islamic law over the nation, and drive out all followers of Christ. more >>