Working on Capital Hill to Stop Killings in Nigeria

Killings grow worse daily: I was one of several leaders of groups concerned with religious freedom that signed a letter to Secretary of State Anthony Blinken asking that Nigeria once again be designated a Country of Particular Concern (CPC) regarding religious freedom.

Other organizations signing the letter included Christian Solidarity International, Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, Genocide Watch, International Christian Concern, Jubilee Campaign USA and several others. In all, more than twenty major organizations signed onto the letter to Blinken.

In the letter we outlined the increase in violence against Christians after President Biden ordered the removal the CPC status from Nigeria:

After the still unexplained removal of Nigeria’s CPC designation in November 2021, both the general level of violence and specific targeting of Christians increased. Open Doors found more Christians killed in Nigeria in 2021—4,650—than in all other countries in the world combined. The International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law views the trend for 2022 as on-track to surpass that number, with no fewer than 2,543 Christians killed in jihadist-related violence in the first half of 2022.

We pointed out in the letter that “Blasphemy laws” in northern states where Sharia Law has been codified have increased the violence:

These blasphemy laws have contributed to a culture of mob violence that exploded in 2022. Deborah Emmanuel Yakubu, a Christian college student in Sokoto, was stoned and beaten to death by her classmates and her body burned, just because she thanked Jesus for helping her pass an exam. Local police authorities did little to stop the attack once it had begun.

The killing just does not stop, and the Biden Administration refuses to condemn the behavior of the Nigerian government which allows violence against religious minorities. Far from it, the Nigerian regime has received the friendship of the White House!

Under the Trump Administration the Nigerian regime was designated with CPC status. During that time, while there was much protest by the Nigerian government, violence was reduced. The violence against religious minorities increased instantly with the removal of CPC status by President Biden.

On average, one Christian is killed because of their faith every seven hours in Nigeria. Many Christian children become orphans because of targeted killings.

Read the official letter below.

William J. Murray, President

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