From Fred Ezeh, Abuja
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has cautioned President Muhammadu Buhari against joining the Arab world in opposing the state of Israel in the ongoing violence in the Middle East, insisting that Nigeria is a secular state.
CAN’s advice was presumably in response to recent suggestions by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in which he reportedly called for the international community take action against Israel due to its attacks on Palestine.
CAN General Secretary Joseph Daramola, in a statement released in Abuja on Monday, said: ‘W are worried that Nigeria which was wrongly labelled an Islamic State because of her unlawful membership of the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) has been taking side with the Palestinians since the emergence of President Muhammadu Buhari, hence the request by Turkish President for Nigeria to identify with the Palestinians.
‘Federal government should reverse itself on the support that has been given to the Palestinians to date. For the record, millions of Nigerian Christians are in support of Israel against the position of the government. We once again remind the Federal government and the National Assembly that Nigeria is not an Islamic State.’
CAN called on the international community to intervene in the ongoing bloody actions in the Middle East without taking side if they truly want an enduring peace.
‘We agree with the United States that Israel has the right to defend itself against external aggression. And we see no reason why Nigeria should take side with either of the warring factions,’ CAN said.