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Nigeria: Churches

Question for Foreign and Commonwealth Office

UIN HL15824, tabled on 20 May 2019

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of reports that 900 churches in Nigeria have been destroyed by Boko Haram; and what assessment they have made of whether such activity is part of a campaign to eradicate Christianity in the north of that country.

Answered on

30 May 2019

We are aware of the statement by the Christian Association of Nigeria in January 2017 which claimed that 900 churches have been destroyed by Boko Haram since 2009. We are unable to substantiate these numbers given the challenges of obtaining precise data in north east Nigeria. Boko Haram is a terrorist organisation with a vile ideology and history of attacking civilians, both Christian and Muslim. The majority of Boko Haram's victims have been Muslims. The UK condemns attacks on civilians, including on the basis of their religious belief. The Foreign Secretary discussed the issue of freedom of religious belief and UK support to combat extremists with the Nigerian Vice President during his visit to Nigeria in April. He also met with a wide range of religious leaders to discuss how the UK can support their work to promote interfaith dialogue and long-term peace, and visited North East Nigeria.