Muslim rights group alleges genocide against Fulanis
The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has decried what it described as stereotyping and targeted attacks against Fulani herdsmen, saying attack against Fulanis was invariably attack against Muslims.
Director of MURIC Prof. Ishaq Akintola said yesterday in a statement that the 2nd April, 2014 killings of 15 innocent Fulanis by soldiers in Kadarko and Rugar Ardo Sodangi settlements of Keana Local Government, Nasarawa State among others were distasteful.
“We of the MURIC are deeply concerned particularly as this tragic scenario constitutes the emerging pattern in several parts of Northern Nigeria, particularly in Plateau, Benue and Adamawa,” he said.
Cattle-grazing is not new in Nigeria and it had been very peaceful in the past, the statement said.
It noted that “recently there appears to be a kind of organized resistance and stereotyping of the Fulani herdsmen. This is what we find disturbing.
“Witnesses have reportedly confirmed that efforts at reconciliation between Fulani herdsmen and their neighbours have always been frustrated by external forces who perpetrate fresh killings just when peace accords have either been signed or were about to be signed.”
Prof Akintola said MURIC finds all these disturbing adding “We wonder if we are not witnessing some kind of ethnic cleansing with the Fulani as the main target.”
He said: “The Nigerian Muslim community as a stakeholder in nation-building is also aware of the symbiotic relationship between the Fulani and the religion of Islam and, by extension, the Muslim Ummah of Nigeria. Any hostile act against the Fulani is therefore an indirect attack on Muslims. Genocide aimed at the Fulani is indubitably mass killing of Muslims. It is war against Islam.”
He said Nigeria may be promoting regional tension capable of affecting relationship with countries in the region and that backlashes against non-Fulani Nigerians doing businesses in those places may become inevitable.