Religious violence in Jos worsens

Jos Crisis

Information available to indicate that the violence in Jos, the capital of Plateau State has worsened following the retaliatory attacks by angry mob of Muslim and Christain youths rioting in their repective communities. Law enforcement estimates of casualties are reported to exceed 20 dead and another 15 injured.

The violence erupted Monday. It was said to have been caused by a missed intelligence signal by both angry youths of the Christain dominated communities and Moslim dominated communities. In the christian dominated community, the youths who saw a large number of muslim youths throoping to the mosque located in the christian dominated community – reacted to set an ambush for the muslim youths – believing that the muslim youths had come to attack the christian community.

As the religious rites were completed, and as the muslim youths began to exit the mosque, the christian youths pounched on them and began attacking them. And as the news of the attack got to the muslim dominated communities in Jos, the muslim youths immediately took to arms and began shooting their guns [AK47] up in the air while others went around town to set fire on christain businesses – particularly Igbo businesses.

The soldiers who had been maning the streets of Jos reacted to announce a \”soft\” curfew – a restriction of movement. But the morning of Tuesday saw more violence as muslim youths returning from mosque took to their AK47 riffles. They shot sporadically into the air in large numbers. In mass, they throoped into businesses owned by Christians [particularly Igbos] to set fire to their properties. Injuries were recorded by eyewitness.

The morning of Wednesday saw the AK47 firing action by the muslim youths worsen. And eyewitness sources who spoke to our correspondent indicate that the Nigeria soldiers in turn has open fire indiscriminately on the youths. About 5 muslim youths were recorded to have been gunned down at the residential area of Jos.

Stay tuned



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