posted on Mar, 3 2008 @ 03:03 PM
Clashes between Nigeria's Muslim and Christian communities have left nearly 150 people dead and thousands displaced after five days of violence
sparked originally by the publication of cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohamed.
In the southern city of Onitsha, where the worst of the killing took place, Christians yesterday burnt the corpses of their victims and defaced
mosques in revenge for attacks on Christians in the north of the country earlier this week.
As several bodies burnt on pyres of flaming tyres and the stench of charred flesh filled the air, police began to clear away the dead lying at the
sides of Onitsha's dirt roads.
"Security forces were collecting dead bodies of those killed in the two days of mayhem," said Emeka Umeh, head of the Civil Liberties Organisation
in the city.
Last Saturday, violence broke out in Maiduguri, northern Nigeria, leaving at least 15 Christians dead and 11 churches in flames. The riots were led by
Muslims furious at the cartoons, published in Danish and other European newspapers. More than 100 people were arrested and the army was called in to
help the police. In revenge, on Tuesday morning, riots broke out against the Muslim population in the Christian city of Onitsha.
"The rioters were armed with machetes, daggers, clubs, knives and other metal objects," Mr Umeh added.
With their mosques and businesses burnt, more than 3,000 Muslim men, women and children have overwhelmed the local barracks, police stations and
mosques seeking protection. The Red Cross reports more than 100 people dead in Onitsha "so far", and says it has treated about 70 injured. "They
were attacked by mobs ... some have bruises, some have dislocations," said Anne Asiegbu, the organisation's area officer.
The Anambra state governor, Chris Ngige, has deployed 2,000 policemen on the streets and appealed for calm.
Nigerian analysts believe much of the violence is fuelled by political tensions concerning national elections in 2007. "This type of protest has a
political undertone," said Mr Umeh.
The country is rife with rumour that President Olusegun Obasanjo may try to change the constitution and seek a third term, while others seek to use
violence to further their political influence and position in the forthcoming elections. "Speculation that President Obasanjo will try to change the
constitution so he can seek a third term is raising political tension and if proven true, threatens to unleash major turmoil and conflict," John
Negroponte, the US intelligence chief, said this month.
"Such chaos in Nigeria could lead to disruption of oil supply, secessionist moves by regional governments and instability elsewhere in Africa," he
Nigeria's population of 120 million is split roughly in half - the northern Hausa are predominantly Muslim, and the southern Yoruba and Ibgo ethnic
groups are mostly Christian. In 1999, Sharia law was introduced in many of the northern states, aggravating tensions between Muslims and
In September 2001, 915 people died in Jos after news of al-Qa'ida's attacks on America. More than 200 people were killed in 2002, following outrage
when Nigeria tried to host the Miss World beauty contest.
Some in Onitsha have set deadlines for the Hausa community to leave. The city's deputy police commissioner, Haz Iwendi, said: "The various state
governors are meeting to ensure that this does not snowball."
muslims and christains fighting...
well 150 dead....
look's to me they are killer's and basicly all relegion's.
all the thing's stated muslim's done are done by men...women... not muslim..christian's ect....
the relegion say's kill for yoru GOD inthe enternal my God is better than yoru god war.
there all stupid ..
but to me muslim's are just as soon to kill anyone over there god
as back in hte holywar time's of christainty..
to deny muslim relegion meen's you need to die lol
BTW that's hitler style muslim's bielive in us or radical muslim's OR we will kill you for there jihad... so they become a martyer...
total bs i wouldn;t kill a man unless he harm's my family screw relegion if it take's dumb folk's allway's in these relegion's to go aroudn
killin peopel for there god.... piss on those relegion's.
yes radical muslim muslim basicly the same ..same god.. kurhan what ever it is...
so be warned....
and that is my opinion flame me or what ever.
i say all killing for your god's name is dumb...
if your god want's you to kill for him to proove he a better god lol.... HE ISN'T MUCH OF A GOD....but that's just me lol
[edit on 3-3-2008 by beforetime]