A horrific machete attack has left at least 17 Christians dead. The attack by militants from an Islamic extremist group called ADF on a Christian community in Eringeti, Eastern DRC, happened on Tuesday 3 May. The exact toll is still being counted and many of those who were seriously injured have since died.
Open Doors spoke to a pastor in the area who said the people are terrified. The situation is very unpredictable. The reason behind the attacks is not clear. Many people have fled to nearby Oicha in fear of their lives, others have decided to stay and hope that the situation will become less tense.
The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is not on the World Watch List for 2016, but barely missed being included. Islamic militancy in Africa is part of a broader, global ideological current. Groups taking inspiration from the so-called Islamic State (IS) have, over the past year, claimed the lives of thousands of Christians on the continent. Although generally not as big and bold as IS, these groups are bolstered by their links to like-minded organisations inside and outside Africa.
Such has been the case with the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), one of a number of rebel groups operating in the eastern parts of DRC. This Islamic militant group has been repeatedly attacking the mostly Christian population in these parts of DRC for years. Kidnapping and murder are common. Although their successes ebb and flow, they continue to display surprising strength.
We support people who are beaten, tortured,
imprisoned, falsely accused, and hated simply for following Jesus.