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Nigeria: Religious Freedom

Question for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office

UIN HL909, tabled on 13 June 2022

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the safety of, and freedom of religion for, Christians in Nigeria

Answered on

28 June 2022

Nigeria's Constitution guarantees freedom of religion or belief. The security situation in Nigeria, and its impact on Christians and other religious or belief minorities is complex.

In the North East, terrorist groups such as Islamic State West Africa (ISWA) and Boko Haram have caused immense suffering to both Christian and Muslim communities. These groups seek to undermine the right to freedom of religion or belief (FoRB) by indiscriminately attacking those of all faiths or beliefs who do not subscribe to their extremist views.

Elsewhere in Nigeria, intercommunal violence has had a devastating impact on both Christian and Muslim communities. Our assessment is that religious identity can be a factor in incidents of intercommunal violence, but the underlying drivers are more complex. These include competition over land and natural resources, which has been exacerbated by climate change, historical grievances, and criminality.

We will continue to make clear to the Nigerian authorities at the highest levels the importance of protecting civilians, including religious or belief minorities, and human rights for all Nigerians.