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     Home > Justice & Peace >  2013-08-02 17:02:09
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Churches burned down in sectarian violence in Guinea

An estimated 17 churches in five cities in Guinea have been burned down or looted since mid-July. That’s according to Worldwatch Monitor, a news site that reports on the persecution of Christians. Judicial authorities in Guinea are investigating an outburst of deadly violence two weeks ago that left at least 95 people dead and 130 wounded. The killing of a suspected thief on 14 July in Koulé, a city 40 kilometres from Nzérékoré, the main city in southern Guinea, has led to acts of retaliation and a wave of violence between members of Guerzé and Konianké ethnic groups.
The incidents very quickly degenerated into a sectarian conflict between Christians and Muslims, with the destruction of a number of properties owned by Christians, including several churches. A priest told Worldwatch Monitor that in one city, the two Catholic and Protestant churches were ransacked and burned and that almost all the houses and shops belonging to Christians or people affiliated with Christians were attacked.
A Muslim cleric was also killed in the wave of sectarian violence, and a mosque was burned down. The West African nation of 10.9 million is 85% Muslim, 5% Protestant, and 3% Catholic. Seven percent (7%) follow African Traditional Religion. The mineral rich country is due to hold long-delayed parliamentary elections next month. Many analysts have also blamed last month’s violence on political differences.


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