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Kidnapped clergy members in Nigeria face threats from Islamic terrorists.


Abuja, Nigeria: According to local reports, Islamic extremists in northeastern Nigeria threatened to kill a kidnapped Christian pastor in a video that they released early last week if they did not receive a sizable ransom payment.

The same group that released the video featuring Boko Haram’s flag in May also features Rev. Paul Musa, the pastor of COCIN in Gamboru Ngala, Borno State, kneeling in front of an armed terrorist.

The abduction of Pastor Musa and his spouse occurred in March 2023.

Our captors have given you one week to secure our release, and they are prepared to do so.

“To meet their demands, Pastor Musa says in Hausa on the video, doing that is necessary.” My appeal is that you do whatever you can within the stipulated time to either get us out of here or receive news about our deaths.

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The 15-second video shows the pastor dressed in an orange shirt and kneeling, his hands behind his back, with the terrorist standing behind him. In the video, he says this is his last appeal to government authorities and church leaders.

The terrorist organization is demanding a ransom of between 39,180 and 130,221 USD.

The Rev. David Ayuba Azzaman, from Kings Worship Centre International in Kaduna, revealed to Truth Nigeria that Pastor Musa’s son had received a warning from the terrorists in Cameroon. With a threat to kill his father, they demanded payment in seven days.

According to Azzaman, Truth Nigeria, the terrorists rejected the COCIN’s offer of funds they had raised because they were insufficient.

The chairman of the Borno State chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), the Rev. John Bakeni, told the media outlet that multiple videos showing Pastor Musa have appeared previously and that CAN has been striving to obtain the release of various Christian captives, including Pastor Musa.

Kidnapped Priest

In northwestern Nigeria’s Zamfara State, a Catholic priest appealed for his life in a video after he was kidnapped on June 22 from church premises at St. Raymond Catholic Church in the Damba area of the city of Gusau.

In a 51-second video that the unnamed terrorists sent to the Catholic Diocese of Sokoto, the Rev. Micah Suleiman begs for ransom or else he will perish.

“Brethren, here’s my plea. Please help get me out of captivity. Here, my captors don’t keep those they kidnapped for more than a week,” Suleiman says in the video. “They told me killing is their pastime, and they’ll not hesitate to kill me. The reason I’m still alive, they said, is because they’ve given me the chance to talk to my people about paying up the ransom they’re demanding for my release.

“I beg you, in the name of God, to help get me out of here. Just look at me. Look at my legs; I have been tied down and beaten with my legs chained. Here, I’m alone, as there are no other captives with me.

They killed those they’ve kidnapped. Please, in the name of God, help me.”

The Rev. Nuhu Iliya, chancellor of the Catholic Diocese of Sokoto, announced his kidnapping and asked for prayer, as did the Rev. Emmanuel Anyanwu, also a Catholic priest.

“Dear friends and beloved family in Christ, I am Revd. Fr. Emmanuel Anyanwu and I are asking you in tears for prayers and support for my dear friend and brother priest, Rev. Fr. Micah Suleiman, who is in deep suffering under the captivity of Islamic extremists,” Anyanwu said. “His only offense was being a Christian and a catholic priest.”

Zamfara State Police Command spokesman Yazid Abubakar confirmed the kidnapping of the priest.

In the 2024 WWL of the countries where it is most challenging to be a Christian, Nigeria was ranked No. 6, as in the previous year.

Nigeria remained the deadliest place in the world to follow Christ, with 4,118 people killed for their faith from Oct. 1, 2022, to Sept. 30, 2023, according to Open Doors’ 2024 World Watch List (WWL) report. More kidnappings of Christians than in any other country also took place in Nigeria, at 3,300.

Nigeria was also the third highest country in the number of attacks on churches and other Christian buildings, such as hospitals, schools, and cemeteries, with 750, according to the report.



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International Christian News publishes reports on the mission field, specifically focusing on the persecuted church and providing daily gospel news. The organization aims to fulfill the Great Commission, edify the global Christian community, and bring honor and glory to the Lord Jesus Christ.