NIGERIA — ‘We will kill train passengers if the government does not meet our demands’

Originally published by Agenzia Fides

“We are not interested in money, the federal government knows what we are asking for”. In a video message posted on Wednesday, the group that attacked the train along the Abuja-Kaduna line on March 28, threatened to kill the captured hostages if their demands (which have not been made public) were not met.

During the attack, eight people were killed and several others injured; the bandits also captured a number of hostages (according to the railways, around 100 passengers are still missing). The video, which is less than two minutes long, shows four bandits with one of the passengers, Alwan Hassan, general manager of the Bank of Agriculture.

- Advertisement -

One of the kidnappers, who spoke in Hausa, said that the hostage was released because of his age and in the spirit of Ramadan: “We are the group that kidnapped passengers on the train few days ago. Among them is this man that was pleading with us due to his old age and we felt pity on him due to the month of Ramadan, so, we want to give him back to his family.

“But the government should not misunderstand this, as it is a gesture we made because of the pity we had on him.”

The bandits then asked the hostage to make some remarks that he “will be released but I want to assure that I have left behind a large number of people who are in a situation that requires their quick release. I hope the government will meet the leader of this group to free them as soon as possible”.

The family confirmed the release of the hostage. The video was allegedly filmed at Polwire’s Forward Operating Base, Birnin Gwari, along the Kaduna-Birnin road in Kaduna State, which was attacked on April 5. During the attack, 11 soldiers lost their lives.

In the video, the terrorists, dressed in military uniforms, use the burnt carcass of an army armoured vehicle as a backdrop. Also on April 5, villages in Kaduna State were attacked, killing at least 17 people. Members of the mysterious group that attacked the train and took the hostages are generically defined as “bandits”, but references to the month of Ramadan suggest they are jihadists.

The state of insecurity in Nigeria was denounced this week both by the bishops and by Mohammed Sa’ad Abubakar III, sultan of Sokoto and President of Jama’atu Nasril Islam, the union of Nigerian Islamic organisations.

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter to stay up to date with God stories of Africa and beyond

DONATE — Click on the link to donate and help us to keep on publishing uplifting news that glorifies God and strengthens His people. Thank you for your support.

COMMENTING GUIDELINES
You are welcome to engage with our articles by making comments [in the Comments area below] that add value to a topic or to engage in thoughtful, constructive discussion with fellow readers. Comments that contain vulgar language will be removed. Hostile, demeaning, disrespectful, propagandistic comments may also be moved. This is a Christian website and if you wish to vent against Christian beliefs you have probably come to the wrong place and your comments may be removed. Ongoing debates and repetitiveness will not be tolerated. You will also disqualify yourself from commenting if you engage in trolling.

2 Comments

  1. Andre, Thank you. So many articles in today’s Gateway News make me so aware of our need as Christians to intercede. There is so much injustice and brutality in our world.
    May it make us more aware and sensitive to the plight of those who are abused and face such terror and death.

  2. Amen to that. Very wonderful to be informed of news from a Christian perspective.