Many feared dead in Nigeria following church attacked 

Multiple gunmen fired on worshippers and detonated explosives at St. Francis Catholic Church in Owo ondo state,southwest Nigeria, leaving many people feared dead. This attack led to pandemonium at Saint Francis Catholic Church, Owa-luwa Street, Owo,  the headquarters of the Owo Local Government Area of Ondo State as gunmen attacked the church on Sunday.

The attack on the church in Owo,  the hometown of the state Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, came barely a week after the Prelate of the Methodist Church of Nigeria, Bishop Samuel Kanu-Uche, was kidnapped in Abia State by gunmen the priest later identified as Fulani youths.

It was learnt the gunmen, who attacked the Catholic church, arrived at the premises, which is less than 200 metres from the palace of the Olowo of Owo, at 12pm when the Sunday mass was being rounded off.

Apart from worshippers, the gunmen also killed passerby hit by stray bullets. Witnesses said the attack occurred during the church’s Sunday service. The witnesses said the gunmen stormed the church during service and started shooting sporadically.

Explosives were also detonated by the gunmen inside premises of the church. Authorities did not immediately release an official death toll. An eye witness said at least 70 people had been killed, though others put the figure higher. Videos appearing to be from the scene of the attack showed church worshippers lying in pools of blood while people around them wailed.

Pope Francis responded to the incident after being clarified and said in a statement from the Vatican press office that he “prays for the victims and for the country, painfully attacked at a time of celebration, and he entrusts everyone to the Lord, that God might send His Spirit to console them.”

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