Religious leaders in Nigeria demand that Boko Haram release a schoolgirl who they’ve kept, despite releasing 104 others, for refusing to renounce Christ and become Muslim.
The Islamic terrorist organization Boko Haram captured 110 girls from a school in Dapchi, Nigeria, on Feb. 19, killed five of them during their captivity, and released 104 of the girls back to their families on March 21. One girl, Leah Sharibu, remains in captivity, however, and those who Boko Haram released say that her captors refuse to release her because she is a Christian and refuses to wear a hijab or become Muslim. Both Catholic and Muslim leaders in Nigeria are crying out against Boko Haram and demanding the Nigerian government secure Sharibu’s release, according to Crux Now.
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Bishop Emmanuel Badejo of Oyo said local Christians are grieved over the murder of the five school girls, and outraged over Boko Haram’s persecution of Sharibu for her faith in Christ.
“They will also be proud of the faith of this mere Christian girl who has thus dared Boko Haram terrorists, who are feared by even the entire Nigerian government and people,” Badejo said, according to Crux.
Muslims also openly denounced Boko Haram as heretical and called their tactics un-Islamic in the wake of their refusal to release Sharibu.
“We reiterate for the umpteenth time that Boko Haram’s doctrine is heretical, and its methods stand in contradistinction to those of pristine Islam. Once again, we reject Boko Haram as an Islamic group. We urge the leadership and members of the group to re-examine its ideological base,” Muslim Rights Concern said, according to Crux.
Badejo meanwhile urged Christians to unite in prayer and in whatever actions were necessary to aid Sharibu and called on local communities to pressure the country’s government to be more proactive in secure her release.
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