Nigeria explodes in violence again
Despite massive efforts by security officers in the northern Nigerian city of Kano, Muslims continue a deadly riot against Christians in the suburbs of the city.

As is usual in such situations, details are sketchy and contradictory. Police say 10 people have been killed in two days of rioting, but an eyewitness said he saw at least that many corpses in one place alone.

Nath Ikyur told Reuters that Muslims were stopping cars along Bayero University Kano Road, killing those who didn't pledge allegiance to Islam.

"I saw at least 10 dead bodies on the BUK road," he said. "I saw a group of five burned bodies at one point. Some of the others were cut with machetes."

Another Nigerian corroborated this story in an interview with the Associated Press, saying drivers and passengers were forced to recite Muslim prayers. An AP reporter said she saw three women attacked with machetes at such a checkpoint, after one of the Muslims accused them of being "nonbelievers" because they wore Western-style clothing. Taxi drivers intervened before the women were killed, but they suffered head wounds.

Soldiers are preventing journalists from entering the areas of conflict, the AFP news service reports, so don't expect too much on-site reporting for now. Meanwhile, reporters say at least 5,000 area Christians are now refugees after fleeing their homes for fear of their lives.

"Many people have been killed in Sharada, but we have not been able to bring out their bodies, because we had to look to our own lives," Joshua Adamu told the South African news service SAPA.

It looks like the violence will get worse before it gets better. "Everywhere the hoodlums are taking laws into their own hands," Kano's police chief told reporters ...

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Ted Olsen
Ted Olsen is Christianity Today's editorial director. He wrote the magazine's Weblog—a collection of news and opinion articles from mainstream news sources around the world—from 1999 to 2006. In 2004, the magazine launched Weblog in Print, which looks for unexpected connections and trends in articles appearing in the mainstream press. The column was later renamed "Tidings" and ran until 2007.
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