Compass Direct News (CDN) is reporting that early morning attacks in Tafawa Balewa, Bauchi state on Sunday (Jan. 22) left at least seven Christians dead and a church building destroyed, reports Dan Wooding, Founder of ASSIST Ministries.
The attack on the Evangelical Church Winning All Church 2, residents of Tafawa Balewa said, was carried out by area Islamic extremists alongside members of the Boko Haram sect, with the church building and surrounding houses bombed. Yunnana Yusufu, pastor with the Church of Christ in Nigeria in Tafawa Balewa, told Compass that the assailants arrived in the early morning hours and began shooting at Christians in the town, about 100 kilometers (62 miles) south of Bauchi City.
“I saw seven dead bodies of some of the Christians killed,” Yusufu told Compass by phone. “The situation is terrible, and I am about to go out to other parts of the town, to see the extent of the damage caused by the attackers.”
CDN went on to say that Yusufu said that many other Christians were injured. Bauchi Police Commissioner Ikechukwu Aduba reportedly confirmed the attack on Tafawa Balewa, saying two soldiers and a policeman, as well as eight civilians, were later killed in a gunfight. He added that six suspects had been arrested.
“Police also reported that bombs were thrown at a Catholic church building and an evangelical church building in Bauchi City, causing little damage and no deaths or injuries,” added the CDN story.
“Two weeks ago, gunmen believed to be Muslim Fulani herdsmen attacked three Christian farmers on their farms in Pyakman village, near Tafawa Balewa, killing the three. Corpses recovered from the farms had bullet wounds and machete cuts, said Bukata Zhadi, secretary of the Christian Elders Council in Tafawa Balewa.”
Note: Boko Haram, the name given to the Islamic extremist group officially called Jama’atu Ahlis Sunna Lidda’awati Wal-Jihad – “The People Committed to the Propagation of the Prophet’s Teachings and Jihad” – seeks to impose a strict version of sharia (Islamic law) on Nigeria. The name Boko Haram translates loosely as “Western education is forbidden.”