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Nigerian student beaten to death over “blasphemous” WhatsApp message

A 25-year-old Christian student in Nigeria’s Sokoto State was beaten to death and her body burned after her Muslim classmates purportedly found a blasphemous message she had sent to a school WhatsApp group, according to a persecution watchdog.


The victim, identified as Deborah Emmanuel, who was also a member of the Evangelical Church Winning All and a student at the Shehu Shagari College of Education, was killed Thursday, the U.S.-based group International Christian Concern reported, adding that a video of her killing went viral on social media (a portion of the attack can be seen here).

Deborah, who lived with her parents in Sokoto, apparently got into an argument with her female classmates after sending a WhatsApp message her classmates interpreted as blasphemous, ICC said.

The video posted on social media shows her lying still on the ground as she tried to protect her head with her left arm as male and female students gathered around, beating her with sticks, throwing large stones, and shouting, “Allahu Akbar,” or “Allah is greater.” She pleaded with her classmates not to kill her.


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