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Published On: Tue, Apr 24th, 2018

Herdsmen invade Catholic Church, murder two priests, 17 others in Benue

Herdsman wielding AK47 rifle

Gunmen suspected to be Fulani herdsmen have killed two priests and 17 worshippers  at St. Ignatius’ Catholic Church, Ayar, Gwer east Local Government area of Benue State.

Moses Iorapuu, director of the Catholic archdiocese of Makurdi, confirmed the attack, blamed it those he called “Jihadists”.

According to the Cable , the gunmen were said to have opened fire on the worshipers after invading the church around 5am on Tuesday.

Some worshipers were also killed in the attack while many sustained injuries.

The deceased priests were identified as Joseph Gor and Felix Tyolaha.

A witness said  a mammoth crowd thronged the Bishop Murray Medical Centre, Makurdi, to witness the depositing of the remains of those killed.

He added that many houses were burnt by the attackers.

“They (those killed) were brought in amid much wailing and sorrow from the crowd of mourners,” he said.

“The remains of the slain priests were an ugly sight to behold. Their killers butchered and mutilated their bodies hideously.

“Some of the locals who escaped the attack and fled to Makurdi were among the crowd at the hospital. There is war right here in Benue.”

Moses Yamu, spokesman of Benue police command, could not be reached as of the time this report was filed as he neither responded to calls or text message.

The high rate of insecurity in Benue has been a source of concern to residents and the government.

All efforts to bring attacks under control have not yielded the desired result as there is hardly any week that killings are not recorded across the state.

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