Deadly Bombings Rock IDP Camps Near Goma DRC: Targeting Christians

Farrukh Saif

May 15, 2024

Congo-DRC

Christian persecution in Africa has reached alarming levels, with numerous countries witnessing a surge in violence and discrimination against the Christian community.

A recent attack when a series of horrific bombings targeting camps for internally displaced persons (IDPs) near the city of Goma in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)  left dozens dead and many more injured. The attacks have drawn widespread condemnation from the international community and local authorities. Predominantly, the camp was populated by Christians who were targeted by Islamists in various villages and cities, forcing them to flee to different parts of the country and seek refuge in IDP camps.

Report From UN Office:

According to the latest reports from the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), at least 35 people have been killed and 32 injured, including 27 in serious condition, after multiple rockets struck four IDP sites in the outskirts of Goma on May 3rd .

The bombings have sparked outrage from the Catholic Bishops of the DRC under CENCO, who condemned the attacks as “outrageous and despicable acts committed by uncivilized persons.”  In a strongly worded statement, on 6th May 2024, the Bishops called for an independent international investigation by the African Union and UN to establish responsibility.

Escalating Violence and Targeted Attacks:

This violent act is a clear example of the increasing persecution faced by Christians in various African nations. Countries like Nigeria, Mali, Burkina Faso, and Somalia have witnessed a relentless onslaught of attacks by extremist groups, resulting in countless lives lost, churches desecrated, and entire communities displaced.

Beyond the overt acts of violence, Christian communities across Africa faced systematic Persecution and marginalization. In countries like Eritrea and Sudan, believers face severe restrictions on their religious freedoms, with churches being closed, pastors arrested, and believers subjected to torture and imprisonment for practicing their faith.

Even in nations where Christianity is the predominant religion, such as the DRC, Christians are not immune to persecution. Extremist Islamic ideology groups have fueled targeted attacks, leaving many believers living in constant fear for their lives and the safety of their families.

A Humanitarian Crisis: A Call for Unity and Action

The persecution of Christians in Africa has escalated to a level that can no longer be ignored. It represents a grave humanitarian crisis, with millions of believers being displaced, their fundamental rights violated, and their very existence threatened.

We ECSPE sounded the alarm, urging governments and the global Christian community to take decisive action to protect the rights of Christian minorities and foster an environment of religious tolerance and coexistence.

In the face of significant adversity, African Christians demonstrate remarkable resilience and unwavering faith, serving as a ray of hope. However, more needs to be done to address this crisis. Churches and para-church missions should stand in solidarity with our Christian brothers and sisters in Africa.

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Farrukh Saif

Farrukh H. Saif, a courageous Christian human rights activist, established the Farrukh Saif Foundation in 2009 to confront religious discrimination, blasphemy laws, and bonded slavery in Pakistan. His dedication to liberating bonded laborers from brick kilns and advocating for blasphemy victims and asylum seekers has garnered international acclaim. Despite encountering threats and fatwas, his impactful work persists in supporting marginalized communities. In 2018, the foundation merged with The Emergency Committee to Save the Persecuted and Enslaved, enhancing its global outreach.

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