Nigeria: Wave of violence in the Christian state of Kaduna

Frankfurt am Main/ Abuja, 29 July 2020 – In the past few weeks dozens of people have been killed during attacks by armed men in the Nigerian state of Kaduna. The latest attack on July 19 claimed 18 lives, all of them guests at a wedding ceremony. According to witnesses, the attackers belong to the Fulani ethnic group. The International Society for Human Rights (ISHR) condemns the massacres and calls on the Nigerian Government to take action against the wave of violence and to bring the perpetrators to justice.

For several years now, territorial conflicts have been taking place between the majority Muslim Fulani herders and local farmers. In order to pacify this conflict, Nigeria’s government under President Muhammadu Buhari (77) had announced the introduction of so-called Ruga Settlements. Ruga zones should be specially designated for cattle breeding, thus defusing the territorial conflicts with the local farmers.

The state of Kaduna in Nigeria. Source: CommonsWikipedia

The ISHR is very concerned about the current flare-up of violence. Dr. Emmanuel Ogbunwezeh, ISHR Africa Advisor, criticises that the Nigerian government does not seem to be able to implement the measures to pacify the conflict in a credible manner. According to him, the passivity of the Nigerian government could plunge the entire sub-region of West Africa into a serious crisis and lead to massive waves of refugees, which could also reach Europe.