80 killed as members of Nigerian Christian tribe attacks Muslim group: police - CanadaEast.com
- 80 killed as members of Nigerian Christian tribe
attacks Muslim group: police
ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) - Fighters of a predominantly
Christian tribe attacked a Nigerian town dominated by
a rival Muslim ethnic group, razing homes and mosques
and killing at least 80 people, Nigerian police said
The ethnic Tarok assailants, armed with machetes,
British colonial-era muskets and homemade guns,
attacked the predominantly Hausa town of Yelwa, 340
kilometres east of the capital of Abuja, Monday
morning, said Raymond Nyama, a police officer who
visited the scene.
Although the motive was unclear, the attack came a
week after Hausas launched an attack on the Tarok
village of Kawo, burning churches and inflicting an
unknown number of casualties.
Police counted 80 bodies in the streets following
Monday's attack, Nyama added. An unknown number of
mosques were burned.
Nigeria's ThisDay newspaper put the death toll at 100
or more, with three mosques and more than 1,000 homes
Tens of thousands of residents were fleeing the area
on foot, carrying whatever possessions they could
carry, police said.
The Christian Tarok farmers and predominantly-Muslim
Hausa traders and cattle herdsmen have launched
back-and-forth raids since an outbreak of religious
violence in the city of Jos left more than 1,000
people dead in 2001.
Since January, violence has surged, killing hundreds
in the region of fertile farms and pastures, police
and civic groups say.
Religious, ethnic and political enmities have fuelled
outbreaks of communal bloodletting resulting in more
than 10,000 killed since President Olusegun Obasanjo
was first elected in 1999, ending 15 years of
repressive military rule.
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