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Kidnapped Catholic priest in Nigeria is found killed
CHRISTIAN TODAY
Posted on: September 5th 2017
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© CHRISTIAN TODAY

A Catholic priest in Nigeria, who was kidnapped on Friday morning, has been found murdered.

Fr Cyriacus Onunkwo was taken from his vehicle in the town of Orlu, in the state of Imo in the southeast of the country.

The priest's body was discovered on Saturday in the neighboring village of Omuma.

The state commissioner of police, Chris Ezike, told the local newspaper Vanguard: 'Although we are working on all leads over the matter, [for] now, it is a clear case of abduction and murder. If it was a case of kidnapping, his captives would have put a call across to anybody close to their victim and made a demand.'

The police said that no arrests have so far been made. They found the priest's car, and said nothing had been taken.

The diocese of Orlu is 70 per cent Catholic and unlike the Muslim-majority north of the country, where the Islamist militant group Boko Haram threatens the Christian community, the southeast of the country is predominantly Christian.

However, the region is plagued by government corruption and violence, with armed gangs roaming the region, and regular kidnappings for ransom. Imo state has one of the highest crime rates in the country, according to the Catholic news website Crux.

In September 2016, the Nigerian Bishops' Conference issued a statement calling on the government to do more to tackle rising crime.

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