News / Africa

Kenyan Muslims Offer Christians Protection from Attacks

Kenyan security forces secure the African Inland Church after an attack in Kenya's northern town of Garissa, July 1, 2012. Kenyan security forces secure the African Inland Church after an attack in Kenya's northern town of Garissa, July 1, 2012.
x
Kenyan security forces secure the African Inland Church after an attack in Kenya's northern town of Garissa, July 1, 2012.
Kenyan security forces secure the African Inland Church after an attack in Kenya's northern town of Garissa, July 1, 2012.
Peter Clottey
A leading member of Kenya’s Inter-Religious Council has welcomed as an unprecedented gesture an offer by Muslim leaders to protect Christians following last Sunday attacks.

Mustafa Ali said the recent church attacks were aimed at creating deep rifts between Muslims and Christians in Kenya.

“The Muslim leaderships in the country, particularly in northeastern Kenya, are saying that they are offering Muslims themselves to guard the churches, particularly on Sundays, as Christians go to the churches and pray,” said Ali.

“This is unprecedented in the Christian-Muslim relationship in the country… the relationships are generally very good, other than a few instances where Christians and Muslims have disagreed on  [few things], but have not really fought each other, as we are witnessing in places like Nigeria,” he added.

Kenyan police say gunmen attacked two churches in the eastern town of Garissa Sunday killing 17 people and wounding 40. They said the attackers threw grenades and opened fire on worshippers.  

The deadliest attack took place at the African Inland Church, where at least 10 people were killed, including two police officers.  The second attack took place at a Catholic church.  Although there has been no claim of responsibility, police have blamed previous attacks on sympathizers of the Somalia-based Islamic militant group al-Shabab.

Ali said the attacks create tension between Christian and Muslim communities.

“For al-Shabab to kill so many Christians, it creates a very difficult situation for the inter-faith relations between Muslims and Christians.  And, Muslims increasingly fear that these kinds of attacks are going to lead to reprisals, the kind that we have seen in Nigeria.”

Prime Minister Raila Odinga condemned the attacks saying they were designed to spark conflict between Muslims and Christians.

Muslim clergymen in Garissa also condemned the attacks and have called for a stronger relationship with their Christian counterparts.

Ali said the Inter-Religious Council supports the gesture by the Muslim leadership to bolster unity and cooperation with Christians following Sunday’s church attacks.

“We support this step taken by the Muslim leadership in Kenya… What al-Shabab wants to do is to create disaffection between Muslims and Christians,” said Ali. “Kenyan Muslims are saying that we should not get into such a stage where Christians are targeting Muslims or Muslims are targeting Christians.”

Clottey interview with Mustafa Ali, member of Kenya’s Inter-Religious Council
Clottey interview with Mustafa Ali, member of Kenya’s Inter-Religious Council i
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X

You May Like

EU Court Fines Poland for Hosting CIA 'Black Sites'

Ruling is first time a court has acknowledged suspects were held and tortured at the sites, under US program launched following the 9/11 terrorist attacks More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

Video At AIDS Conference, Prevention Pill Stirs Excitement

Truveda shows promise, spurring debate over access and other approaches More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Basil Vasiliu from: New York
July 05, 2012 7:43 AM
There is nothing more atrocious than unwarranted cowardly attacks by members of groups that don't have the courage to stand up for what they believe in a civilized way. People have to be more observant and organized. Because unfortunately things are not as spiritually advanced enough to allow people to just be, and pray with each other in the way that most satisfies them. We will one day look back and realize that we are still in the infantile stage of civility. In order to advance we must protect ourselves from the desire to punish. Punishment has to be humane.


by: Tanko from: Abuja
July 05, 2012 7:08 AM
Yes this is a welcome development and good gesture in mending relationship between the two faith, but just a point of remainder we also in Nigeria at so many instances have done that,its just that we have to keep on educating our people on this sensitive issues and to be tolerance to one another.


by: Barbara from: France
July 05, 2012 5:22 AM
Oh, how cute... Islam - we must defeat this contamination


by: Rev:Martin Yoasa from: Juba south sudan
July 05, 2012 2:18 AM
Brother's AL-shabab, why are creating blood shed in the world? do you know Allah whom you said you are praying to? He will bring us all to the throne of justice. Muslims are Muslim.Christian are Christian.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debatei
X
Shelley Schlender
July 24, 2014 6:43 PM
In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Death Toll From Israel-Gaza Conflict Surpasses 700

Gaza officials say a shelling hit a compound housing a United Nations-run school in the Gaza Strip, killing more than a dozen people, during an Israeli offensive in the area. Heavy fighting between the Israeli military and Hamas militants continued on Thursday, pushing up the death toll. So far, more than 730 Palestinians and 35 Israelis have been killed in the conflict. VOA's Scott Bobb has the latest from Jerusalem.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Researchers Target Low-Cost Avatar Technology

Scientists at the University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies say 3-dimensional representations could revolutionize social media. Elizabeth Lee has more from Los Angeles.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid