Originally published in Christian Today
Seven Christians have been killed in Kenya by al-Shabaab militants, according to International Christian Concern.
The killings took place earlier this month in three separate villages. Three policemen were killed in the first raid, when 200 militants attacked Pandanguo village in Lamu county. Three days later 15 of them returned and attacked the villages of Jima and Poromoko.
Locals contacted by ICC said they went from door to door and killed the Christian men. The Christian families have been evacuated and are staying at a church in the nearby Witu town.
The church’s head pastor, Henry Divayo, said the attackers had been targeting Christians living in Lamu County especially farmers in the interior areas where small-scale agriculture thrives.
The militants had been asking the villagers to produce their identification cards. ‘If you were found to be a Christian you would be shot or slaughtered,’ he said.
He explained that victims had been evacuated to camps where food and security is provided by government and the Kenya Red Cross. ‘We are hosting more than 200 people in our church and we expect the number to increase as more families are evacuated from Boni Forest,’ he said.
‘The government has been in the forefront in giving security to churches but a lot more needs to be done,’ Divayo continued. ‘We need more well equipped police officers in churches, schools and hospitals.’
Al-Shabaab is based in Somalia but has raided Kenyan villages across the border. It was also responsible for the attack on Garissa University in April 2015 where 148 Christian students were killed.
ICC’s Regional Manager for Africa, Nathan Johnson, said: ‘The Kenyan government must provide safety and stability to all of its people. They must end al-Shabaab’s reign of terror that has been thriving on the border with Somalia. We pray for the families of the deceased and for peace to come to a region that has seen such violence towards Christians. We hope that Kenya’s government can take effective action to rid Kenya of these terrorist actions.’