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(File photo) Security forces patrol the streets in Nigeria (File photo) Security forces patrol the streets in Nigeria  (AFP or licensors)

Kidnapped Catholic priest freed in Nigeria

Police forces in Nigeria’s Edo State liberate a Catholic priest who was abducted by suspected Fulani herders after Mass.

By Devin Watkins

Fr. Isaac Agubi was returning home on Sunday after celebrating Mass when bandits kidnapped him and disappeared into the bush with his car.

The incident took place in Nigeria’s southern Edo State, where Fr. Agubi serves as a priest at the Holy Name Catholic Church in Ikpeshi.

Local hunters helped lead police forces to the kidnappers’ forest hideout on Tuesday.

One of the bandits was injured in an exchange of gunfire with police and was arrested.

The abductors abandoned Fr. Agubi as they fled the scene.

Fulani ties

Fides News Agency and local media tie the group to nomadic Fulani herdsmen.

The Fulani, 90% of whom are Muslim, have been implicated in worsening violence elsewhere in the West African Sahel region.

Separately, in northern Nigeria, at least 150 people have been killed over the past week and 9 others kidnapped.

Twenty-five people were killed in Sokoto State on Saturday, in raids apparently carried out by other Fulani groups.

Herders in Ondo State also kidnapped a woman and her stepson who were on their way to Mass.

Rising insecurity

Archbishop Augustine Akubeze, of Benin City, has decried “the unprecedented level of insecurity”.

Nigeria’s Bishops say impunity has allowed terrorist groups to spread chaos and destruction throughout the country.

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19 June 2019, 13:06