Nigeria: Gunmen Open Fire In Church
Dozens of worshippers were feared dead in an attack on a Catholic church in Nigeria on Sunday.
There was no immediate death toll, but Adelegbe Timileyin, who represents Nigeria’s lower legislative chamber, said at least 50 people had been killed, while others said the figure would turn out to be higher.
The Vatican said that Pope Francis “prays for the victims and for the country, painfully attacked at a time of celebration, and he entrusts everyone to the Lord, that God might send His Spirit to console them.”
The Christian Association of Nigeria condemned the attack, with spokesman Bayo Oladeji saying, "What happened in Owo today is an unprovoked attack on innocent people worshipping God and to [the] Christian Association of Nigeria, it is condemnable; it is unacceptable.
The governor was away in Abuja, taking part in his party's primary elections ahead of next year's polls but suspended his activities and returned to Ondo hours later with state security officials.
Legislator Ogunmolasuyi Oluwole said the attackers targeted the St. Francis Catholic Church in Ondo state just as the worshippers gathered on Pentecost Sunday, with gunmen opening fire and detonating explosives.
Church officials said many of the wounded were fighting for their lives in hospitals.
It was not immediately clear who was behind the attack.
Nigeria is currently facing a wave of violence by armed gangs. Video footage of the scene showed worshippers lying in pools of blood as people around them wailed.