Islamic Radicals Bomb Open-Air Christian Meeting, Kill Two Believers and Wound Over Thirty
Washington, D.C. (April 3, 2012) – On March 31, suspected Islamists threw a grenade and killed two Christians and wounded more than 30 in the Kenyan city, Mtwapa. The Christians were holding an outdoor worship service at the time of the attack. A simultaneous bomb attack was also carried out on a bar in the nearby city of Mombasa.
“Three people who were sitting in a parked car near the site of the event threw a grenade and drove away. Then I heard a blast and saw some women down, crying for help. A lady died on the spot. About 15 people were seriously wounded. Two days after the blast, a young boy died from the injuries,” said Rev. Simon Kirariuki Kimami, a pastor with the Kenyan Assembly of God, in a statement to ICC.
More than 150 Christians were attending the outdoor service. Muslims were also holding a meeting 900 feet from the scene of the attack. The Islamic preachers were vilifying Christianity in their sermon which could be heard from the location where the Christians were holding their conference.
Kenyan officials blame members of the radical Islamic group, Al-Shabaab, for the bomb attacks. Al-Shabaab has been carrying out attacks in Kenya after the government sent its troops to fight the Islamic group in Somalia.
“My message to Christians around the world is to be steadfast in serving and honoring the Lord Jesus Christ, even in the face of persecution and sometimes violent attacks. [I urge Christians] not to retaliate. [Rather] they should show love even when they are attacked,” said Patrick Muchiri in an interview with ICC. Muchiri is a pastor with the Mombasa Pentecostal Church.
ICC’s Regional Manager for Africa, Jonathan Racho, said, “We are deeply concerned about the bomb attack targeting innocent Christians. We urge Kenya to protect its citizens from the growing attacks of the radical Islamists.”