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Prelate: Niger’s Christians fearful of Islamists

Catholic World News - June 20, 2013

Niger’s leading prelate said in an interview that the nation’s small Christian community is living in fear following Islamist violence.

“Strong links already exist between Islamist groups in several countries and a network is forming,” Archbishop Michel Cartateguy of Niamey said in an interview. “We thought the Islamists had been dispersed earlier this year in northern Mali. But they merely regrouped in southern Libya and intervened elsewhere.”

Referring to recent French military intervention in the region, the French missionary bishop said that “France congratulated itself on its intervention in Mali, but it also bears a heavy responsibility for what’s happening today.”

“The presence of foreign forces here has worsened the violence by failing to respect the region’s culture,” he continued. “Muslims have been quick to connect Christianity with the West, so the Islamist campaign looks set to intensify.”

“Catholics have always been well accepted by ordinary Muslims here,” he added. “But integrist movements have begun to agitate and preach against Christianity and the West, and this is something new.”

Local Muslims, he said, are also angered by France’s legalization of same-sex marriage.

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  • Posted by: jg23753479 - Jun. 20, 2013 6:31 PM ET USA

    "Islamists" would gain no traction if the Koran did not endorse their thuggery. But it does. Ordinary Muslims who are tolerant of Christianity are like our sheep in th pews, i.e. ill informed about what their religion really teaches. Once they learn the Mohammedan 'truth', they begin to hate and kill Christians. "The integrists" are merely those Mohammedans who have bothered to study the Koran. Osama bin-Laden was a Muslim who had done his homework, not some kind of aberration.

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