AFRICA/LIBERIA - Apostolic Administrator of Gbarnga, northern Liberia, tells Fides these are not religious clashes, news published so far is inaccurate

Monday, 1 March 2010

Monrovia (Agenzia Fides) - "It was not a clash between Christians and Muslims, but a clash between two ethnic groups," Fides learns from Monsignor Chris Brennan, SMA, Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Gbarnga in northern Liberia, where in the village of Voinjama, on the evening of February 26, at least 4 people died in clashes.
"I am traveling around the area and I have still not collected all the information needed to have an accurate picture of events. But, I can already say that various reports circulating on the Internet and from news agencies are not correct. It does not seem that a church was burned, although a Catholic mission may also have been looted," says Msgr. Brennan. "I would strongly emphasize that such violence is not caused by religious conflict, but by tensions between two groups, one of which is predominantly Muslim, and the other, predominantly Christian. But, this has nothing to do with a supposed religious clash," concluded Msgr. Brennan. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 1/3/2010)