Nigeria to hold funeral for victims of Owo ISWAP terrorist attack

The mass burial of victims from the attack on St. Francis Catholic Church in Owo, Nigeria will take place today.

St. Francis Catholic Church in Owo, Nigeria, against which ISWAP launched a terrorist attack.

Nigeria will hold a mass funeral for victims of an ISWAP terrorist attack on St. Francis Catholic Church in Owo, Ondo State.- Photo: FACEBOOK/rotimiaketi

The mass burial of victims from the attack on St. Francis Catholic Church in Owo, Nigeria will take place today.

Over 40 people were killed on June 5th, after gunmen attacked St. Francis Catholic Church. The attack has been linked to the insurgent group Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) and is the first to be carried out by the group in Nigeria’s relatively peaceful southwest region. ISWAP has carried out numerous attacks in the northeast and northwest parts of the country, but the most recent attack raises concerns that the organization is expanding into new regions.

The church attack comes as part of a broader trend of extremist violence in Nigeria. Gunmen from armed gangs killed 32 people in a separate attack carried out in Kaduna State last Thursday. Meanwhile, groups like Boko Haram and Ansaru have continued to abduct residents of local areas in Nigeria’s northwest.

Continued violence may feed into mistrust of the government and threaten the rule of law in Nigeria, potentially eroding political and legal institutions. Ahead of next year’s elections, this may cast doubt on election results and create conditions for heated electoral disputes and further violence as Nigeria becomes increasingly unstable.

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