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  • Unknown gunmen attacked church throughout Sunday mass
  • Native media and medic say not less than 50 killed
  • Police say lives misplaced, others injured in assault
  • Such assaults uncommon in southwest Nigeria
  • Pope Francis prayed for victims, Vatican says

LAGOS, June 5 (Reuters) – Gunmen attacked a Catholic church in southwest Nigeria throughout mass on Sunday, killing not less than 50 folks together with ladies and youngsters, in accordance with a hospital physician and media studies.

The gunmen shot at folks inside and outside the church constructing, killing and accidents worshippers, mentioned Funmilayo Ibukun Odunlami, police spokesperson for Ondo state.

She didn’t say how many individuals have been killed or injured at St Francis Catholic Church within the city of Owo however added police have been investigating the reason for the assault.

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Ondo state Governor Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, who visited the scene of the assault and injured individuals in hospital, described Sunday’s incident as “a terrific bloodbath” that shouldn’t be allowed to occur once more.

The id and motive of the attackers was not instantly clear.

“It’s so unhappy that whereas the Holy Mass was occurring, unknown gunmen attacked St Francis Catholic Church…leaving many feared lifeless and plenty of others injured and the Church violated,” mentioned Catholic Church spokesman in Nigeria, Reverend Augustine Ikwu.

Ikwu mentioned the bishop and clergymen from the parish had survived the assault unhurt.

A health care provider at a hospital in Owo informed Reuters that not less than 50 our bodies had been introduced into two hospitals within the city from the assault. The physician, who declined to be named as a result of he’s not authorised to talk to the press, additionally mentioned there was a necessity for blood donations to deal with the injured.

President Muhammadu Buhari condemned the assault, calling it “heinous”, and the Vatican mentioned Pope Francis was praying for the victims who had been “painfully stricken in a second of celebration”.

Nigeria is battling an Islamist insurgency within the northeast and armed gangs who perform assaults and kidnappings for ransom, principally within the northwest.

Within the southwest, assaults resembling this are uncommon.

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Reporting by Fikayo Owoeye in Lagos, MacDonald Dzirutwe, Camillus Eboh and Felix Onuah in Abuja; Enhancing by Catherine Evans, David Holmes and Lisa Shumaker

Our Requirements: The Thomson Reuters Belief Ideas.

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