US lawmakers overwhelmingly approve anti-BDS resolution

 

In my book Winds of Megiddo and Conspiracy Conspiracy Conspiracy I point out the many resolutions that have been made against Israel and the coming war of Armagedden. Here is another resolution to add to the collection. Read what God revealed to me in the books. You can get them on Amazon.com.

House of Representatives passes measure to oppose efforts to boycott Israel. Resolution passes by vote of 398-17, in a rare display of bipartisan unity.

The US House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved a resolution Tuesday opposing an international effort to boycott Israel, a rare bipartisan vote as Democrats try to tamp down increasingly heated political rhetoric over differences with the longtime US ally.

Democrats have been wrestling with the issue all year. Liberal lawmakers, most notably Reps. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn, and Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich, two newly elected Muslim Americans, have spoken out about the boycott, divest and sanctions movement, known as BDS, as they criticize Israel’s treatment of Palestinians. Republicans have amplified the views of the left flank to portray Democrats as deeply divided and at odds with Israel.

Ahead of voting, the bill’s chief backers warned against the stark framing as dangerous for both countries.

“This issue has been politicized in a way that I find ugly and ultimately harmful to the US-Israel relationship,” said Rep. Eliot Engel, D-NY, the chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee.

The resolution passed on a vote of 398-17.

House Democrats have been eager to vote to show support for Israel and, for those lawmakers from more conservative areas, to resist having the party be defined by its most liberal members.

Omar, a member of the Foreign Affairs Committee, was among the only lawmakers to voice objection when the bill was included in a package the panel approved last week.

“What are we doing to bring peace? I believe that simple question should guide every vote we take in this committee,” said the freshman lawmaker, who came to the US as a refugee from Somalia when she was a child and became a US citizen.

Omar has been outspoken against Israel, once tweeting that lawmakers were supportive of the Jewish state because they were essentially being paid to do so. It was widely considered a slur that relied on a trope against Jewish people, and she later “unequivocally” apologized.

Trump called her apology “lame” and Republicans have continued to stoke opposition to her views as part of the “squad” of liberal freshmen lawmakers. Trump stood by last week at a campaign rally as the crowd chanted about Omar, “Send her back.”

Omar, who was among a handful of Democrats who voted against the bill Tuesday, said she supports the long-held US goal of a “two-state solution.” But she said during the committee hearing last week that “truly achieving peace” means “ending this occupation.”

The House has struggled with the issue since the start of the year, after an earlier version passed the Senate.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., had introduced it as the first piece of legislation of the new Congress, and brought it forward repeatedly for votes until it ultimately passed, also with robust bipartisan support. But the Senate measure, which was part of a broader foreign policy package, stalled in the House amid concerns over First Amendment rights and the ability of Americans to protest Israel’s policies.

The resolution puts the House on record opposing the BDS movement and its efforts to target US companies that do business with Israel. The movement has grown in recent years, and Israel sees it as a threat. Supporters of Israel view it as an attempt to delegitimize the Jewish state.

“We must reject the blatant anti-Semitics injected throughout BDS,” said Rep. Lee Zeldin, R-NY, a sponsor of the measure.

To win over those in the House who had panned the Senate effort, the resolution beefed up First Amendment protections over the boycott. While the Senate bill affirmed the legal authority of state and local governments to restrict contracts or take other actions against entities that boycott Israel, the House bill affirms the constitutional right of Americans to engage in “free speech, including the right to protest or criticize the policies of the United States or foreign governments.”

US lawmakers overwhelmingly approve anti-BDS resolution

New technology unlocks burned Leviticus scroll, text unchanged in 2000 years

While skeptics like to say the Bible has been changed over the centuries, new technology affirms one scroll from the ancient Torah to be virtually unchanged in 2000 years.

The burned scrolls found in an ancient synagogue’s ark near the Dead Sea in 1970 resemble charred lumps of elongated charcoal. They sat in archaeologist Yosef Porath’s storeroom since they were discovered – too fragile to be opened or read.

Studying scroll (University of Kentucky)

But last year Porath asked the Israel Antiquities Authority’s lab in Jerusalem to scan the burned scrolls, using a 3D version of the CT scans hospitals use to create images of internal body parts.

“I looked at him and said, ‘you must be joking,’” Pnina Shor, who heads the lab, told The Times of Israel.

No one thought a scan of the charred objects would render anything of value. But Porath sent the images to William Brent Seales, a researcher in the computer science department of the University of Kentucky. He developed a new technique known as “virtual unwrapping technology,” which provided the breakthrough.

Dr. Seales had been working on his technique for the last 13 years, pursuing the Holy Grail of reading a brittle ancient scroll without opening it.

While the CT scan could find blobs of ink inside the scroll, the jumble of letters floating in space would be unreadable unless they could be assigned to their proper place on the surface where they were originally inscribed.

In 2009 Dr. Seales figured out how to recreate the physical structure of the layers of a papyrus Herculaneum scroll found near Pompeii, destroyed when Mt Vesuvius erupted in 79 A.D.

His method models the surface of an ancient scroll in the form of inter-locking triangles. Each triangle is resized by the computer until the virtual surface fits the actual scroll. The Hebrew letters are then assigned to their appropriate place on the virtual surface, and the computer turns the 3-D structure into a 2-D sheet.

computer imaging program allowed reading ancient text (Seales)

When the researchers realized they could actually read the Leviticus text, they were ecstatic.

“You can’t imagine the joy in the lab,” Shor told The Times of Israel.

“Not only were you seeing writing, but it was readable,” Dr. Seales noted. “At that point we were absolutely jubilant.”

The Scripture found in the burned Ein Gedi scroll is “100 percent identical” to the version of the Book of Leviticus that has been in use since medieval times, the Masoretic text, according to Dead Sea Scroll scholar Emmanuel Tov from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

“This is quite amazing for us. In 2,000 years, this text has not changed,” Tov told the Times of Israel.

“We may safely date this scroll” to between A.D. 50 and 100, noted Ada Yardeni, an expert on Hebrew paleography, in the journal Textus. Dr. Tov also agreed with the first-century date.

Only one of the surviving scrolls yielded results, the scroll that contained the first two chapters of Leviticus, wherein Moses describes the role of sacrifices in God’s plan to atone for man’s sin, a symbol of Jesus’ ultimate sacrifice as the “Lamb of God.”

While Dr. Seales’ technique offers great promise to Bible scholars, it could also unlock long-lost works of Latin and Greek literature, especially the charred scrolls found in the Roman villa at Herculaneum.

Is the the word ‘Christian’ too hot for YouTube

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Many expressions of Christian belief have been censored by YouTube, which is owned by Google.

But on Tuesday, even the word “Christian” ran afoul of the social-media giant.

Chad Robichaux reported an ad for his ministry to veterans was rejected for including the word “Christian.”

Robichaux was instructed to “please remove the unacceptable content to continue.”

View image on Twitter

 

Syrian TV reports Israeli attack on targets in country’s south

Syrian TV reports Israeli attack on targets in country's south

Syrian state television said on Wednesday that Israel struck a strategic area in southern Syria overlooking the Golan Heights where Western intelligence sources previously said Iranian-backed militias are known to be based.

The newsflash on state-owned Ikhbariyah did not give details, but said the strike, involving surface-to-surface missiles began at 12:40 a.m. and was directed on Tal al-Hara, a strategic hill south of Damascus that had long been an outpost for Russian forces but was later taken by Iranian-backed militias, according to Western intelligence sources, and Quneitra province. The hill overlooks wide parts of southern Syria all the way to the Israeli Golan Heights.According to the Syrian state news agency’s report, the country’s air-defense systems were activated against “hostile missiles” launched from the Israeli Golan Heights and Israeli aircraft west of Damascus. In addition, According to the report, two further explosions were heard around 1:00 a.m., one in the Quneitra area and a second in Tal al-Hara, adjacent to Quneitra.

According to state news agency SANA, damages were only material.

However, according to Arab media reports, the brunt of the attack as directed at an Iranian base where Hezbollah and members of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard are stationed.

Syrian officials were quoted in the Arab media reports as saying the attack decimated the base, and that there were many wounded and killed.

According to reports in Syria, a number of sites incurred major damage in the attacks, and there were casualties, although the number of those killed and wounded remained unclear.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that the attack was directed, among other targets, against weapons storage sites used by Hezbollah and other pro-Iranian militias in Syria’s and housing long-range missiles and other weaponry. It was further reported that one of the missiles had exploded inside a base in western Damascus where large forces of pro-Iranian militias in Syria were stationed.

The zone has been a target of Israeli raids against Tehran-backed militias which have become entrenched in southern Syria and the Golan Heights near the border with Israel.

State news agency SANA later referred to the last Israeli attacks at the end of last month when it said its air defenses repelled a major attack on some of its outposts on the outskirts of the capital and Homs province.

Diplomatic sources familiar with Syria said at the time these overnight attacks outside Damascus on Iranian-backed forces, including bases of Lebanon’s powerful Hezbollah group, were among the largest strikes attributed to Israel in recent years.

They came only days after the national security advisers of Israel, the United States and Russia met in Israel, with Washington and Jerusalem demanding that Moscow ensure the withdrawal of Iran’s forces from the region, according to intelligence sources.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed after the trilateral meeting to continue to act against Iranian entrenchment in Syria.

The media gave no further details about the early Wednesday attack that came a month after Israel targeted the same area. In that instance, Syria said its air defenses repelled a major attack on some of its outposts on the outskirts of the capital and Homs province.

In recent years, Israel has carried out hundreds of strikes in Syria that it says have targeted its regional archrival, Iran, as well as Lebanon’s Hezbollah, which it calls the biggest threat to its borders.

Canadian Woman Forced to Close Business after Refusing to Wax a Trans Woman’s Genitals

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An immigrant living in Canada closed her home-based waxing business after a trans woman filed charges against her before the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal.

Jessica Yaniv, a biological male who identifies as a female lesbian, asked the woman for a wax, which involves removing hair from the genital area. The woman initially agreed to the service, but later canceled it. Yaniv said it was because the woman learned of Yaniv’s sexual identity, but the woman claims it was because of safety concerns and Yaniv harassing her, the Toronto Sun reports.

Many have rushed to Marcia Da Silva’s defense. Da Silva, who immigrated to Canada from Brazil, offers waxing services for women. They argue that since Yavin still has male genitalia, Yavin would need to get a different service that is aimed at men; one which Da Silva does not provide.

Yaniv, who claims to be an LGBTQ2SIA and Human Rights Activist, is no stranger to the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal. Yaniv has filed complaints against 15 others for refusing to provide the genital waxing service, claiming discrimination based on gender identity.

Jay Cameron, an attorney with the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedom who represents Da Silva and other clients, told The Post Millennial that, “Some of my clients have been significantly affected on a personal level. [Another client also] closed her business, she has been depressed, anxious, sleepless, and that has gone on for a period of many months.” He continued, “It is a very serious thing to launch a human rights complaint against a person. My clients are people. They have a right to make a living and this has interfered with their livelihood, but also you have the stigma of being associated with this hanging over you.”

At a hearing last week, the tribunal voted to lift a publication ban on the case, which had previously kept Yaniv’s name out of the limelight, even though the complainant had been openly discussing the case on social media. Cameron observed, “I don’t think that somebody making complaints to the scale that the complainant is making should be able to hide behind a ban and then publicly discuss the cases online.”

As Christian Headlinespreviously reported, Yaniv has also been in the news this week for requesting to host a “topless” pool party for LGBT youths 12 and over at a public pool. The request also stipulated that parents would be banned from attending the event.

On Tuesday, a young woman came forward and shared messages between her and Yaniv from five years ago, when she was 14 and Yaniv was 27. In the messages, which were shared by The Post Millennial, Yaniv made overtly sexual comments about the girl’s body, asked for tips about going into the women’s restroom, and asked for pictures of her used feminine hygiene products. Yaniv responded to these allegations by sharing a tweet which said Info Wars had learned some of the tweets attributed to Yaniv were not authentic.

Yaniv continues to argue that the discrimination cases are legitimate and that the defendants violated the British Columbia Human Rights Code and the Canadian Human Rights Code. On Tuesday Yaniv tweeted, “I’m female. Im a woman. Im not a man. Im as entitled to EVERY service a female is entitled to and any such refusal is a violation of the BCHRC and the CHRC.

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Three Christians Forced to Convert to Buddhism in Rakhine State, Burma

Chin people in unidentified area of Burma in 2007. (Wikipedia, Corto Maltese)

YANGONBurma (Morning Star News) – Local authorities in western Burma (Myanmar) last month forced three Christians to convert to Buddhism, area sources said.

In Ann Township in southern Rakhine state, five local officials led by U Tin Shwe Maung took two ethnic Chin Christians from their homes in Padi Kyin village to a monastery on May 24 and threatened to expel them from the village if they did not convert to Buddhism, according to the Chin Human Rights Organization (CHRO).

Forcing pastor U Aung Thin and a member of his 30-member house church who requested anonymity to sign documents stating their conversion to Buddhism before the Buddhist monk in charge of the monastery, the officials also threatened that the two Christians would be fined 100,000 kyats (US$80) if they engaged in Christian activities, villagers told CHRO.

Previously local officials have demanded money from other Christians, according to area Christians.

In a separate case the next day (May 25), a Buddhist monk took Padi Kyin village Christian U San Tin Aung to a village administration office and compelled him to sign documents stating conversion to Buddhism or else he would be expelled from the village, according to CHRO.

“We released a statement publicly to let the Burmese government know that ethnic Chin people in Padi Kyin village were forced to convert to Buddhism,” CHRO Field Director Salai Terah told Morning Star News. “We are trying to travel to that area to find out and solve the problem.”

Village officials have told CHRO leaders that they do not want them to visit, and Terah said doing so now would only worsen treatment of Chin Christians there.

“We can’t travel there at the moment because local authorities and local residents don’t want us,” he said.

Christians told CHRO that after the men signed the documents, area officials again threatened to expel them from the village if they continued practicing Christianity.

The officials also banned the three men from visiting the homes of Christians and doing business with them. Authorities patrol the village announcing through a loudspeaker that if the three men fail to obey, they will be fined 100,000 kyats (US$80) each, local sources told CHRO.

Some local Christians who have been insulted and physically assaulted by local authorities because of their faith have moved to nearby villages, according to CHRO.

Many ethnic Chin retain their ancestral animist beliefs and practices, though today most are Christians, according to the Joshua Project and other sources. Encouraging Buddhism to try to unite Burma’s disparate peoples, the Burmese government has long persecuted Chin Christians for their faith.

In July 2018, a group of Buddhists physically assaulted a pastor and two Christian women in the Ann Township area, beating them and stoning their home, Terah said.

The house church in Padi Kyin is the only congregation in the village. Of the more than 200 households in the village, only 11 are Christian.

“Our Christian community who are minorities there suffer discrimination and human rights violations,” Terah said. “We publicly released the news, but the government took no action. We want religious freedom. Don’t the government leaders know our suffering, or do they pretend to not know it?”

CHRO will try to bring the cases in Padi Kyin village before international Christian organizations if the government fails to address them, he said.

Burma is about 80 percent Buddhist and 9 percent Christian. The country is ranked 18th on Christian support organization Open Doors’ 2019 World Watch List of the countries where it is most difficult to be a Christian, up from 24th the previous year.

Officials in Cuba Forbid Church Leaders to Attend Religious Freedom Event

Cuban officials blocked the departure from Cuba of the Rev. Alain Toledano Valiente. (Facebook)

MEXICO CITY (Morning Star News) – Authorities in Cuba on Sunday (July 14) refused to allow the national presidents of two Christian denominations to board their flight to Washington, D.C., to attend a religious freedom event, sources said.

The Rev. Moises de Prada Esquivel and the Rev. Alida Leon Baez, both members of the Alliance of Evangelical Churches of Cuba (AECC, Alianza de Iglesias Evangélicas Cubana) were slated to represent the organization as members of its executive board at the event.

They were notified at Havana’s José Marti International Airport that they would not be allowed to travel to the U.S. capital because Cuban State Security had blocked their departure from the country, according to an AECC press statement.

Cuban authorities reportedly denied other evangelical leaders permission to travel to the United States. Officials earlier refused to renew the passport of the Rev. Dariel Llanes, president of the Western Convention Baptist Church of Cuba (Iglesia Convención Bautista de Cuba Occidental), reportedly to keep him from attending the meeting in Washington. Immigration officials also reportedly blocked the Rev. Alain Toledano Valiente of the Prophetic Apostolic Movement (Movimiento Apostólico Profético) from leaving the country.

The incidents were the latest in a campaign of repression against the evangelical Christian community in Cuba.

On Friday (July 12), State Security agents forcibly detained independent journalist Ricardo Fernandez Izaguirre following his visit to the offices of human rights watchdog group Ladies in White in Havana.

The Camaguey-based reporter and advocate of religious freedom, who is married with an infant daughter, has since been held incommunicado by authorities, according to advocacy group Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW).

Fernandez Izaguirre, an active member of a network of unregistered charismatic Christian churches, has reportedly been working with the predominantly Roman Catholic Ladies in White to document violations of freedom of religion and belief, a right enshrined in the Cuban constitution.

The jailed journalist’s friends and family have been unable to contact him since his arbitrary detention, and his mobile phone appears to have been disconnected, according to CSW.

Anna-Lee Stangl, head of advocacy for CSW, appealed to authorities for Fernandez Izaguirre’s release.

“CSW holds the Cuban government responsible for the well-being of Ricardo Fernandez Izaguirre,” Stangle said. “We call on the authorities to release him immediately.”

Evangelical leaders suspect mounting pressure on Christians – and on the AECC in particular – is rooted in their outspoken opposition to proposed constitutional changes aimed at legalizing homosexual marriage in Cuba. A new Cuban draft constitution approved in 2018 by the National Assembly of People’s Power replaced a clause defining the family as “a union between one man and one woman” with “a union between two persons…with absolutely equal responsibilities.”

Backlash from Cuba’s Christian community forced authorities to delete the new language, but constitutional framers specifically avoided re-inserting the traditional definition of marriage as a union between one man and one woman. That left the door open to approve homosexual marriage through the new Cuban Family Code, set to be ratified within two years.

Christians fear it also practically guarantees that the campaign of repression against outspoken Christians will continue.

“In Cuba, there is no real freedom of expression or of worship,” a veteran evangelical pastor who requested anonymity told Morning Star News. “Any person who openly opposes the established system is looking for problems.”

Were the government to listen to the voice of Protestant Christians on the issue and maintain the definition of marriage as between a man and a woman, there would be a possibility for resolution, the pastor said.

“But given the fact that the daughter of Raul Castro, (LGBT activist Mariela Castro Espin) is the force behind the constitutional change, I think it very unlikely that the government will back down from its intentions,” he said.

The AECC, composed of Protestant churches choosing not to identify with the regime-friendly Cuban Council of Churches, counts 1 million members among its affiliate denominations, a number that represents nearly 10 percent of the country’s 11 million population.

Christian Widow Driven from Home in Central Uganda

Islamist threats compelled Sharifa Kasozi Nakamate to flee her native Kirinda in central Uganda. (Morning Star News)

NAIROBIKenya (Morning Star News) – A widow in central Uganda has fled her homestead after receiving Islamist threats when she arranged for a pastor to bury the body of her husband, sources said.

Local leaders on July 11 gave Sharifa Kasozi Nakamate, of Kirinda in Wakiso District, one day to recant her Christian faith or leave her homestead, she said.

After the burial of her husband, Hajji Salimu Kasozi, who died on June 15 at age 65, she began receiving threatening text messages from the clan leader, she said.

“It is now clear to the clan that you and your deceased husband abandoned Islam, since Hajji was buried by Christians,” clan leader Musa Hamisi told her in one text message, according to Nakamate. “We are giving you a few days to recant the Christian faith or face the wrath of being an apostate.”

Among the hard-line Muslims who gave the 49-year-old Nakamate the ultimatum was her son, 29-year-old Alamanzan Basudde, she said.

“I realized my life was now in danger, so I sought refuge at the church,” she told Morning Star News.

She has since relocated to another area, where the church rented a place for her to live and conduct a small business. The church, unidentified for security reasons, has reported the threat to the local council of Kirinda.

“We know it will be very difficult for Nakamate to return to her house,” the church pastor told Morning Star News. “She is so much distressed at the moment.”

Nakamate secretly put her faith in Christ in October 2018. Her husband was Christian in name only, neither worshipping with other secret Christians nor attending mosque prayers, sources said.

When he died, area Muslims refused to bury him on grounds that he habitually ate pork and drank alcohol in public, she said.

“I decided to run to the church, and the pastor came and buried my husband,” said Nakamate, who also has two adult daughters.

The Muslim community’s response to the burial came as a surprise, she said.

“I never expected such thing to happen to me,” she said in anger and disbelief. “I have lost everything that I did in developing the homestead for more than 30 years of our married life, only to lose everything just like that because of following Jesus.”

The church is also concerned for the fellowship’s security. A member received an anonymous text message that read, “Please let Nakamate return to her religion to avoid any negative repercussion of your church.”

Kirinda is located in the Masajja Division of Wakiso district.

The pastor said the church is uncertain what to do next.

“We need prayers as we continue discipling Nakamate to be rooted in the Christian faith,” he told Morning Star News by telephone.

Nakamate said she fears Muslims will discover her new living quarters.

“Two days ago a Muslim from my home village came and bought items from me,” she said. “I am afraid that she will go back and spread news of my new place of residence. This new place is not safe for me.”

The threats to her safety constitute the latest of many cases of persecution of Christians in Uganda that Morning Star News has documented.

Uganda’s constitution and other laws provide for religious freedom, including the right to propagate one’s faith and convert from one faith to another.

Muslims make up no more than 12 percent of Uganda’s population, but with high concentrations in eastern areas of the country.

Pregnant Mother among Five Christians Slain in North-Central Nigeria

National Mosque in Abuja, Nigeria. (Wikipedia)

JOSNigeria (Morning Star News)

A pregnant mother of two children was among three Christians killed by Muslim Fulani herdsmen in north-central Nigeria the night of July 14 and morning of July 15, sources said.

Margaret Wakili, a 27-year-old member of the Baptist Church in Ancha village, Plateau state, was slain on her farm at about 10 a.m. on July 15, area residents told Morning Star News.

The herdsmen attacked the Christian communities of Ancha, Tafigana, Kperie, Hukke and Rikwechongu, killing the three Christians and burning down 75 houses and two church buildings, according to area residents Patience Moses, Zongo Lawrence and Chinge Dodo Ayuba.

Ancha village was the scene of an attack two years ago, when Fulani herdsmen killed 22 Christians, all members of the Baptist Church in the village.

Moses told Morning Star News by phone that Muslim Fulani herdsmen attacked the villages on the night of July 14 and the early hours of July 15. In Tafigana village, Bassa County, she said, they killed Thomas Wollo, 46, and his son, Ngwe Thomas Wollo, 7.

“Both of them were ambushed and killed in Tafigana village as they were returning to their home after attending a church program at St. Peter’s Catholic Church, Tafigana, at about 8:30 pm,” she said.

Lawrence, of Miango town, told Morning Star News that the herdsmen beheaded the elder Wallo after killing him. He said attacks on Christian communities in the area have heightened, with one village or another attacked nearly every day.

“We have been experiencing daily attacks by these Fulani herdsmen in our communities, most especially on Sundays during worship hours or Thursdays when church activities are held,” he said.

Lawrence said that 75 houses with food stores and two church buildings were burned down.

“The herdsmen destroyed farm produce worth millions of naira, and a lot of domestic animals were killed in the two villages,” he said.

The attacks on the farms occurred on July 14 as Christians were in worship services in the villages, he said.

Ayuba, another resident of the area, confirmed that Wollo and his son were killed on July 14.

“The attacks by the herdsmen continued on Monday morning with another village, Ancha, attacked, and a woman killed,” Ayuba said. “As a people, we are continuously under attack, and nobody seems to be hearing our cries for help, while killing of our people has now become a routine.”

Two other area Christians were killed in prior attacks. On July 7 in Kperie village of Kwall District, also in Bassa County, the herdsmen ambushed and killed a Christian identified as Ezekiel Audu, 25, at about 9 pm., Moses said.

“Christian residents said Audu was riding his motorcycle in company of his friends when they were ambushed and shot by the herdsmen,” she said. “He was a member of ECWA [Evangelical Church Winning All] church in Kperie village.”

Prior to the July14-15 assaults, the herdsmen also attacked Hukke and Rikwechongu villages, destroying crops on farms belonging to Christians.

On May 3 at about 10 p.m., the herdsmen had attacked the same two villages, killing a Christian identified as 63-year-old Di Zere. Zere was killed in his room when the herdsmen broke into his house as he and his family were sleeping. His corpse was burnt, and his 10-year-old daughter sustained gunshot wounds.

Lawrence said Fulani herdsmen have killed 17 area Christians this year.

“We are left without rescue,” he said. “Houses were burnt and razed down, alongside many churches. Farm produce has been destroyed, while many with gunshot wounds are currently in hospitals. Hundreds of our people have been killed by the Fulani herdsmen in the past three years.”

Enugu State Shooting

In southeastern Nigeria’s Enugu state, Fulani herdsmen shot and wounded a Catholic priest and one of his parishioners on Wednesday (July 17), sources said.

The Rev. Ikechukwu Ilo of St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, in Numeh, was shot as he and Chika Egbo drove along the Numeh-Nenwe Highway in Nkanu East County at about 7 p.m., according to a church press statement.

The statement from the Catholic Church quotes the priest as saying that those who attacked them were armed herdsmen.

“As we drove towards the village, the Fulani killer herdsmen, who spoke both in English and Fulani languages, opened fire, trying to force us to stop,” Ilo said. “Seeing that we were not ready to cave in to their intimidation, they started raining bullets on our vehicle at close range, and in the process, shot me at my ankle and shoulder while the other victim was shot in her leg and waist.”

The Rev. Benjamin Achi, spokesman for the Catholic Diocese of Enugu, told Morning Star News by phone that the attack on the priest and parishioner was carried out by Fulani herdsmen.

“Fr. Ilo and the woman with him are currently receiving treatment at a Catholic Church health facility, the Annunciation Specialist Hospital, Emene, Enugu state,” Achi said.

Police also on Friday (July 19) confirmed the attack.

“The Enugu state command of the Nigeria Police Force through its operatives are investigating the attack on a priest identified as Rev. Fr. Ikechukwu Ilo of St. Patrick Parish, Numeh on Wednesday July 18, 2019, along the Numeh axis of Nkanu East Local Government Area of Enugu State,” police spokesman Ebere Amaraizu said in a press statement.

There is a history of attacks on Catholics in the state. In October 2016, herdsmen kidnapped two priests as the clergymen carried out pastoral duties in their local parishes. One of the kidnapped priests, the Rev. Aniako Celestine of St. Joseph Catholic Church, in Ukana, Udi County, was kidnapped by Fulani herdsmen while carrying out pastoral duties in the town of Ezeagu.

The second kidnapped priest, the Rev. Chijioke Amoke of St. Theresa’s Catholic Church, Onicha Enugu Ezike in Igboeze North County, was also kidnapped by armed herdsmen, diocesan officials reported.

Another Catholic priest, the Rev. Lazarus Nwafor, in August 2016 was killed by herdsmen when they attacked Attakwu town in Enugu state. The Rev. Callistus Onaga, bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Enugu, stated then that Nwafor was cut several times in the attack by the herdsmen on the Attakwu Christian community in Nkanu West County.

Such attacks by Muslim Fulani herdsmen have adversely affected churches and crippled productive activities in the area, church leaders say.

Christians make up 51.3 percent of Nigeria’s population, while Muslims living primarily in the north and middle belt account for 45 percent.