March 17th, 2010
08:49 AM ET

11 killed in Muslim-Christian violence in Nigeria

Attackers killed at least 11 people Wednesday in a region of Nigeria that has been convulsed by violence between Muslims and Christians, an official said.

Muslim herdsmen, some dressed in military uniforms, attacked a predominantly Christian village about 1 a.m. Wednesday near the city of Jos, where a machete-wielding Muslim group killed hundreds in a mostly Christian town this month, said Choji Gyang, special adviser on religious affairs to the governor of the Nigerian state of Plateau.

The dead included women and children, he said. The attackers, from the Fulani ethnic group, also injured at least four people and stole 120 cattle from the village of Kyi, he said. Two people are missing.

The violence has put much of Nigeria on edge, with rumors swirling of more attacks. Authorities in Lagos took the unusual step of sending a text  message to residents to try to put them at ease.

"Please be informed that the story of Fulanis trooping into Lagos for the past three days to cause chaos is baseless," the message said. "All security agencies have investigated this rumor individually and collectively and found that there's no iota of truth in it. Be advised to go about your lawful business without fear.

"All agencies remain committed to keep our state and country safe. We are fully alert. Thank-you and pass this message onto others."

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Filed under: Nigeria • World
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