Research by Christian Solidarity International (CSI) has found that, in the first three weeks of 2022 alone, hundreds of Nigerians have been killed and abducted by Fulani militants, and thousands displaced as a result of the extreme violence affecting communities in Nigeria.
From 1 to 21 January, at least 615 people were reported murdered by ‘bandits’, ‘herdsmen’, ‘gunmen’ and ‘Fulani’ militants, and at least 231 known persons were abducted by the aforementioned. Approximately 13,050 Nigerian people were displaced from their homes due to the violence.
These statistics have been aggregated from reports in both the international and local Nigerian press. (Click on the link to see tables). They almost certainly represent an undercount, as many killings go unreported in the press.
The first day of 2022 was marked with violence and death for Christians in Nigeria. Fulani militants attacked worshippers returning home after attending an annual new year’s prayer meeting in the Irigwe chiefdom in Plateau State.
The following three weeks brought more attacks on Christians: A chieftain with the All-Progressives Congress party was shot dead in Ikot Udoma after attending Qua Iboe Church; four seminarists were abducted; and a Christian man was murdered and his pregnant wife abducted near Kaduna city. Raids on predominantly Christian villages by militant Fulani herdsmen have continued. In one incident in Tyaana, Plateau State, three young men were killed with guns and machetes.
On average, it appears that at least 29 people were killed daily in Nigeria within the first three weeks of 2022. Plateau State has the highest number of incidents (killings, abductions and/or displacements), followed by Kaduna. Muslim-majority Zamfara State has had the highest number of killings, estimated at 272 people, with 200 of them killed in one single attack. Some 10,000 people were subsequently displaced.