ICON's Data Tome Shows Nigeria is a Ticking Time Bomb; ICON Argues That if Nigeria Implodes, So Goes the Whole of Africa; Western Intervention is Needed Now
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International Committee on Nigeria (ICON)
July 28, 2020
WASHINGTON, July 28, 2020 /Christian Newswire/ -- The International Committee on Nigeria (ICON), a nonprofit working to secure a future for all Nigerians, launched a new Data Tome ("report") today proving the religious persecution and genocide that has been occurring in Nigeria over the last 20 years. The report includes recent testimonies of some of the more than 60,000 victims in Nigeria, including statements from witnesses who have been targeted specifically for their Christian faith, among a comprehensive collection of other data and statistics.
In a video teleconference call, ICON's co-founder Kyle Abts introduced the report, entitled "Nigeria's Silent Slaughter: Genocide in Nigeria and the Implications for the International Community," saying, "The firsthand accounts of the ongoing religious persecution and genocide are shocking and cannot be tolerated. While the country's own government has failed to stop the violence, Nigeria has been transformed into an epicenter of terrorist activities and a ticking time bomb. This report shows us that action is needed now and intervention by the United States is critical."
Using data from January 1, 2000 to January 31, 2020, ICON's report exposes how one of the world's deadliest terrorist groups, Boko Haram, has killed more than 43,000 Nigerians, the vast majority women and children. Additionally, it raises awareness of the continuing onslaught by Fulani Militants, who have killed nearly 19,000 Nigerians, primarily Christian farmers. Based on data collected, between 2000-2019, deaths resulting from Fulani Militant attacks include 17,284 across the country, 13,079 in predominantly Christian states (Benue, Kaduna, Plateau, and Taraba). That means three of every four Fulani Militant victims during this time were Christians.
The Nigerian government claims to be "on top of the situation," but terrorist attacks continue to ravage different parts of the country, and perpetrators appear more emboldened by the government's complacency.
"The ongoing violence and brutality perpetrated against innocent Nigerians by Islamist terrorists like Boko Haram and Fulani Militants has to stop; it's that simple," stated ICON co-founder, Stephen Enada. "President Buhari and his administration are attempting to dictate the narrative and condition the world, really, to believe that Nigeria's Christians are safe from terrorism, which is simply untrue, as our report verifies. A U.S. Special Envoy is key to turning things around in Nigeria."
ICON has been advocating for the U.S. to send a Special Envoy to Nigeria and the Lake Chad region for several years. Earlier this year, the organization partnered with the International Organization for Peace Building and Social Justice (PSJ) to launch the Silent Slaughter campaign. Silent Slaughter is a global campaign created to shine a light on the humanitarian crisis in Nigeria and advocate for peace. The goal is to engage global partners to hold President Buhari accountable.
Silent Slaughter supports a peaceful, unified Nigeria and believes unequivocally that sending a U.S. Special Envoy to Nigeria and the Lake Chad region is key to achieving this.
Others participating in today's teleconference include Dr. Gregory Stanton, chairman and founding partner of Genocide Watch; Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom; Reverend Johnnie Moore, president of the Congress of Christian Leaders and commissioner of USCIRF; and Former Congressman Frank Wolf.
"Nigeria's Silent Slaughter" report has received praise from multiple political and religious
individuals, proving the document's validity. Endorsements for the document include the Family Research Council, Hudson Institute's Center for Religious Freedom, Genocide Watch, International Christian Concern, members of Benue State Government, the U.K. Parliament, and more.
Click here to access the report. Statements of support are as follows:
Tony Perkins, Family Research Council
"ICON's newly released report is both distressing and urgent. With forewords by three internationally respected human rights experts—Rep. Frank Wolf; Baroness Cox, House of Lords; and Archbishop Benjamin Kwashi—this remarkable report paints a devastating picture of the ongoing slaughter that threatens to decimate Africa's largest and most prosperous country. Page after page contains meticulously curated facts and figures, including original certification of incidents, legal briefs, maps, charts and graphs. This amounts to a clear-eyed presentation of death and destruction carried out by savage jihadis, most notably Boko Haram and Fulani radicals. It is my opinion that this grim evidence calls for immediate action. I hope and pray it is acted upon by responsible international governments and organizations willing to take every step necessary to save the lives of innocent men, women, and children."
Baroness Cox, U.K. Parliament
"I have had the painful privilege of visiting some of the worst affected areas and have heard directly from survivors of attacks. They have shared – with immense bravery and with tears – personal tragedies of mass slaughter, torture, amputations, rape, forced displacement and destruction of homes, churches and farmland. The longer these massacres and atrocities are tolerated, the more the perpetrators are emboldened. We give them a 'green light' to carry on their killings and destruction with impunity. I therefore strongly commend this timely report and hope that appropriate actions will result, as a matter of urgency."
International Christian Concern
"International Christian Concern was alarmed by the evidence presented in Nigeria's Silent Slaughter. The book helps to shed light on the horrific and large-scale persecution going on in Nigeria—a tragedy that continues to escalate but consistently fails to garner appropriate international attention."
Nina Shae, Hudson Institute's Center for Religious Freedom
"ICON's data sheds important light on the brutal onslaught of Christian communities in large parts of Nigeria. It's an important compilation showing that Nigeria has become one of the world's hotspots of Islamic extremism and that now more Christians have been killed for their faith there than were slaughtered in ISIS's genocide in Iraq and Syria, combined. So far, our secular media and foreign policy establishment have missed this story. I hope our policy makers and ordinary citizens study this critical report and take action to help. Thank you, ICON, for exposing this horrific persecution and working for justice for these religious believers!"
Dr. Gregory Stanton, Genocide Watch
"This is a historic document that ICON has put together. It's very much like the document the Knights of Columbus put together when we were trying to demonstrate to Congress that ISIS was committing genocide against Yazidis, Christians, Shia Muslims and other religious groups in Syria and Iraq, which, as you know, resulted in a unanimous resolution stating such."
About International Committee on Nigeria (ICON)
International Committee on Nigeria is a consortium of Nigerians and other nationalities who have combined efforts to help Nigeria. Our mission is to create a community where rule of law guides every facet of societal interactions in Nigeria. ICON promotes human dignity, the right to live, religious freedom, and the protection of the vulnerable against all forms of persecution.
SOURCE International Committee on Nigeria (ICON)
CONTACT: Elizabeth Heaton, 202-445-9858, firstname.lastname@example.org