Fulani jihadists massacred 215 Christians in just one week in April 2022. Credit: Nigeria Premium Times
Nigeria Genocide Emergency Alert
Nigeria is currently undergoing one of the deadliest genocides in the world. More people die in Nigeria every month than in Ukraine. The UNDP estimates that terrorists have killed over 350,000 people in Nigeria since 2009. 300,000 were children. Boko Haram, ISWAP, and Fulani jihadists have also forcibly displaced over 2.9 million Nigerians. The genocidal massacres have mainly targeted Christians.
In May 2021, Boko Haram’s leader Abubakar Shekau blew himself up to avoid capture by ISWAP. But Boko Haram has not stopped its attacks. In March, 2022 Boko Haram allied with bandits hijacked a passenger train on route from Kaduna to Abuja and kidnapped over 2 dozen civilians. They also briefly captured the Kaduna airport.
In the first 3 months of 2022, jihadists murdered over 6000 civilians, the vast majority of whom were Christians. In the Middle Belt and Northwest, Fulani militias have embarked on a campaign of genocidal massacres of Christian farming villages. Their aim is predatory expansion of their grazing land. They are financed by corrupt Nigerian Army officers who own large herds of cattle.
The U.S State Department is in full denial about the genocidal nature of the Fulani massacres. It has characterized Fulani terrorism and killings as motivated not by genocidal intent but rather by the scarcity of arable land and the effects of "climate change" on pastoral communities. The US Ambassador to Nigeria and State Department deny the religious nature of the massacres, in which Christian villagers are slaughtered, but Muslim villages are left unharmed.
Islamist-inspired mobs have accused Christian girl students of “blasphemy” and stoned them to death. In 2022 in Sokoto, Deborah Immanuel, a student, was accused of blasphemy by fellow students and stoned to death and her body burned. The lynch mob was organized via social media and footage of her stoning went viral on Whatsapp (Meta-owned) social media.
Nigerian police and military response to the jihadist killings has been ineffective and abusive. Military campaigns to defeat Boko Haram & ISWAP have killed hundreds of civilians, garnering more support for the terrorist groups.
President Buhari is an ethnic Fulani himself. He heads the Fulani Cattlemen's Association. He has turned a blind eye to the Fulani massacres of Christians. In 2022, the Nigerian government released leading Boko Haram terrorists.
Anti-grazing laws passed by regional states to curb Fulani encroachments have targeted pastoralists, hampering their way of life. There have been retaliatory attacks on nomadic Fulani herdsmen and rampant anti-Fulani hate speech.
Due to the organized massacres of Christians by Boko Haram, ISWAP, and Fulani jihadist militias, Genocide Watch considers Nigeria to be at Stage: 9 Extermination and Stage 10: Denial.
Genocide Watch recommends:
The UN Human Rights Council should appoint an independent investigative team for Nigeria.
The U.S. State Department should return Nigeria to its list of Countries of Particular Concern.
Nigeria’s federal and regional governments should organize a Strike Force to stop jihadist massacres.
Nigeria should establish defined grazing areas for Fulani herdsmen but repeal anti-grazing laws that threaten the Fulani nomadic way of life and livelihood.
Nigerian civil society leaders should condemn anti-Fulani and anti-Christian hate speech. Meta (Whatsapp and Facebook) should not allow its platforms to be utilized for organizing genocidal attacks.
Christian churches should organize human rights centers and early warning programs.
Christian and Muslim religious leaders should establish programs for interfaith action against violence.