Trump Meets With Nigerian Leader On Monday: Open Doors President Urges him to Hold Country Accountable for Slaughter of Christians

The world community must work together to stop increasing anti-Christian violence in Nigeria. New wave of Islamic extremism can’t be allowed to succeed.

by David Curry

When he meets with Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari Monday, President Trump needs to seize this opportunity to call Buhari to account for allowing unchecked atrocities against Christians in his country.

While Boko Haram has made headlines for murdering and terrorizing people in Nigeria, in this case  President Buhari is allowing members of his own ancestral group — the Fulani — to attack innocent communities.

The unimpeded actions of this group of extremists, loosely known as “militant Fulani herdsmen,” are creating a humanitarian crisis of shocking proportions in Nigeria.

Indeed, most people have never even heard about this brutal group, which earlier this month executed an attack that killed 19 Christians.

President Trump must not pass up a prime opportunity to fight this injustice by facing down its chief enabler. Buhari intends to speak with Trump about the promotion of economic growth, fighting terrorism, and building on Nigeria’s role as a democratic leader in the region.

But the conversation must not stop there.

Buhari’s Fulani kin are responsible for hundreds of deaths already in 2018, attacking villages and forcing thousands of people to flee their homes and land. The scale of the Fulani aggression threatens to surpass Boko Haram’s reign of terror, based on the sheer number of deaths.

Since 2001, the Africa Center for Strategic Studies estimates as many as 60,000 Nigerian lives have been lost to violence between Fulani herdsmen and farmers.

In the past year alone, Open Doors received reports from its in-country sources of at least 611 deaths in the latest spike of militant Fulani unrest. These attacks played out in more than 50 incidents, where churches and homes were burned and residents were violently murdered, raped and kidnapped.

The situation is now growing even worse, with 497 more deaths already reported to Open Doors in the first four months of 2018.

Yet, unlike Boko Haram, the ongoing and wide-sweeping violence of the militant Fulani herdsmen has gone relatively unnoticed.

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David Curry is the president and CEO of Open Doors USA.