Ouagadougou (Agenzia Fides) - "We are deeply saddened by this evil act, the Church joins the pain of the Federation of Churches and Evangelical Missions in Burkina Faso. We send our sincere condolences and we are in communion of prayer for the souls of the dead faithful and alleviate the pain of those who have been affected by these murders", said Fr. Paul Dah, at the Head of Communications of the Episcopal Conference of Burkina Faso, in presenting the condolences of the Catholic Church to the victims of the massacre on Sunday 1 December in a Protestant church in Hantoukoura, in the eastern part of Burkina Faso (see Fides, 2/12/2019) resulting in 14 deaths.
According to Pastor Henri Yé, President of the Federation of Churches and Evangelical Missions, the attacked community is "a small new church, with less than 30 members. Many of these are young people between 10 and 14 years of age. Only one of them is over 40 years old.
At the time of the assault, "there was no pastor there" said Yé. "Women and girls were kept inside the church. Only men were dragged out of the church and killed. Among these, some are very young: 10, 12 and 14 years old".
Yé believes that the attackers crossed the border with motorcycles to return to Niger.
According to the local press, a group of at least 12 armed men attacked the place of worship. After separating the men from the women, they told the men to lie down on the ground. After covering the heads of the victims with a cloth, they then killed them one by one. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides, 5/12/2019)