Peace Talks Fall Apart as Violence Continues

(Barnabas Fund) Violence in Kaduna has claimed 1000 Christian lives and destroyed 63 churches just this year; it must stop says the Christian Association of Nigeria(CAN). For three years, CAN has engaged in government-backed peace talks in the state of Kaduna with its Muslim counterpart, Jamutu’ul Nasir Islam (JNI). However, after the recent spate of attacks in which Islamic militants burnt down nine churches in Makarfi, CAN leaders say the peace process has been undermined. As a result of the ongoing violence against Christians, CAN withdrew from the talks 9 April saying, “If we continue to dialogue with people when we doubt their sincerity and commitment to the peace which we are honestly pursuing, then the consequences will be grave, to our peril and enslavement.” North and Middle Belt Nigeria is plagued with frequent outbreaks of rioting between Muslims and Christians. Over 10,000 have been killed in such sectarian violence since 2000 when 12 Muslim-majority states in North Nigeria adopted Islamic law (shari’a).