Abuja (Agenzia Fides) – From 2006 to 2023, 53 priests in Nigeria have been kidnapped, 12 attacked and 16 killed. In seventeen years, 81 priests in Nigeria have been victims of attacks. These are the data reported to Fides by the Bishops’ Conference in Nigeria on the kidnappings and killings of priests in the African country.
The scourge of kidnappings of priests and religious in Nigeria has long been known and is part of a broader phenomenon of kidnappings that target, among others, foreigners, businessmen, politicians, government officials, diplomats and traditional rulers, but also ordinary citizens including students and schoolchildren, often victims of mass abductions.
Northern Nigeria is the area where the kidnapping problem has long been linked to the presence of terrorist groups, beginning with Boko Haram, from whose splits other groups have emerged, the most important of which is the Islamic State of West African Province (ISWAP). But in recent years the phenomenon has spread to different parts of Nigeria, including the south, where the scourge of kidnapping is intertwined with secessionist claims.
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AFRICA/NIGERIA – The scourge of the kidnappings of priests in Nigeria is part of a larger phenomenon – Agenzia Fides