brutal murder of a student accused of blasphemy

In Nigeria, religious leaders are calling for calm as the country is in shock after the murder of a Christian student. The young woman was stoned to death by her Muslim comrades, who accused her of blasphemy against the Prophet Muhammad.

The case occurred in the state of Sokoto, where sharia is applied. Two people were arrested and the school was closed indefinitely. It all started with an audio message posted in a Whatsapp group. In this sound, which the Lagos-based Hausa editorial staff at RFI could listen to, the victim, Deborah Samuel, responds to an article shared by one of the other members. The article talks about the Prophet Muhammad. For Deborah, the group is not meant to talk about religion, and she then makes comments that are considered offensive to the Prophet, in particular she calls him a “thug”.

Words not appreciated by his Muslim comrades. Furious, they took her out of the room where she had been taken to safety by education officials. She fell face down, her pink dress wrinkled. The police tried to intervene and threw tear gas at the angry students, but the latter responded with stones and sticks.

A viral video According to a witness, the police eventually gave up and left Deborah in the hands of her furious colleagues who shouted “Allah Akbar”. She will die after being whipped and burned alive. Scenes of unbearable violence that were also filmed and then broadcast on social networks.

Despite this barbarism, voices are being raised in Nigeria to justify the actions of these students. At a meeting on Thursday between the governor and the priests in Sokoto, some felt that the young girl had not heeded the warnings of her colleagues and therefore deserved what happened to her. The argument is that under sharia, the Koranic law, which is in force in the state of Sokoto, blasphemy, especially against the Prophet, is punishable by death.

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