St Francis Catholic Church following an explosion in Owo Nigeria, Sunday, June 5, 2022. (Photo: AP)
KATHMANDU: Gunmen opened fire on worshippers and detonated explosives at a Catholic church in southwestern Nigeria on Sunday, leaving dozens feared dead, international media outlets reported.
Sooner the worshippers gathered on Pentecost Sunday than the attackers targeted the St. Francis Catholic Church in Ondo state, authorities said.
Many children are among those killed and the presiding priest was abducted as well, said Adelegbe Timileyin, who represents the Owo area in Nigeria’s lower legislative chamber.
“Our hearts are heavy,” Ondo Governor Rotimi Akeredolu tweeted Sunday. “Our peace and tranquility have been attacked by the enemies of the people,” said Timileyin.
According to Timileyin, at least 50 people were killed, though others put the figure higher. Videos appearing to be from the incident site showed church worshippers lying in pools of blood while people around them wailed.
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari in a statement said only fiends from the nether region could have conceived and carried out such a dastardly act.