Four killed by Islamists in Burkina Faso again
Another attack by suspected radical Islamic group, Ansarul Islam, has killed four Catholics of the Diocese of Ouahigouya, including a Priest, on Monday 13 May, and destroyed a statue of the Virgin Mary, Paul Ouedraogo, President of the Episcopal conference of Burkina Faso said in a report. “A group of terrorists intercepted the procession, killing four worshippers and burning the statue,” Spokesman for the Ouagadougou Cathedral added.
No further details were given about the attack and no group has claimed any responsibility yet.
This attack comes barely three day after about 30 suspected Islamic terrorists entereda Protestant church in the town of Silgadji,in Dablo, northern Burkina Faso,on Sunday, May 12, and shot at worshippers. “Armed individuals burst into the Catholic church… They started firing as the congregation tried to flee,” the Mayor, Ousmane Zongo, said.Also killed in the attack was Father Simeon Yampa, who was celebrating the Sunday Mass at about 9:00 am. The Islamists then set fire to the church and other buildings nearby, including a local health center.
“There is an atmosphere of panic in the town. People are holed up in their homes, nothing is going on. The shops and stores are closed. It’s practically a ghost town,” the Mayor added.
A resident told the BBCthat residents were angry that soldiers in a nearby base did not respond promptly while the attack was going on.
Attacks on churches, schools, hotels, and other facilities in Burkina Faso have escalatedsince 2018 which recorded 158 different attacks from only 33 in the previous year.
In April, four people were also killed in another Catholic church was attacked in a nearby village, the bishop of Dori in northern Burkina Faso told Vatican news agency Fides.
Pope Francis, in a tweet on Monday 13 May, expressedhis “sorrow about the news of the attack on the church in Dablo, Burkina Faso,” Alessandro Gisotti, interim director of the Vatican press office, tweeted. “He prays for the victims, for their families and for the entire Christian community in the country.”
The British Foreign Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, has describedpersecution against Christians as “reaching a near genocide,” following a research on chrostoan persecution by Bishop of Truro the Right Reverend Philip Mounstephen, which “estimated that one third of the world’s population suffers from religious persecution in some form, with Christians being the most persecuted group,” regretted that the persecution against Christians has not been confronted due to the “political correctness” of governments, the report said.
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