Oting Massacre: First Naga Baptist Church in Texas demands justice for victims and repeal of AFSPA
'We strongly urge the Indian Government to remove AFSPA (Armed Forces Special Powers Act, 1958) from all the Naga inhabited areas immediately. For we do not desire to encounter such inhuman and barbaric acts again in the future'.
Updated on 11 Dec 2021, 2:37 am
(Representational Image: Unsplash)
The First Naga Baptist Church (FNBC) in Texas, USA, has strongly condemned the December 4 incident in which 13 innocent Naga civilians were killed by the Indian military force at Oting village in Mon district of Nagaland. It said the “gruesome crime” cannot be brushed off as a “mistake”.
“We the First Naga Baptist church (FNBC) in Texas, USA vehemently condemned the heinous crime committed by the Indian military force in Mon district, Nagaland on the 4th and 5th of December 2021, in which 13 innocent Naga civilians were ambushed and killed mercilessly. This gruesome crime can never be dismissed off as a mistake or call the incident self-defense by gunning down unarmed civilians without any rhyme or reason,” the FNBC said in a statement.
Saying the false display of regret is unacceptable, the FNBC demands justice for the victims and the bereaved families.
“Your false display of regret is totally unacceptable. We demand Justice for the victims and their bereaved families at the earliest. Furthermore, we strongly denounce the statements made by Indian home minister, Amit Shah, for it is based purely on lies and deceptions and nothing more,” it added.
Pointing out that Nagas have suffered enough in the hands of the Indian Army for the past several decades, the FNBC said, “Thousands of lives have been lost and many more innocent Naga civilians, young and old, men and women have been tortured, raped and molested, making us feel insecure and unsafe in our own land. Looking back, our history has always been a story of sufferings and discriminations under the forceful occupation of India”.
Saying that such incident should not be repeated in the future, the church demanded the Indian Government to remove the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 from all the Naga inhabited areas immediately.
“This recent incident has time and again proved that the Indian government is devoid of any empathy and respect for the Nagas, but rather terrorizing, exploiting and murdering our people as they wish. Enough is enough! We strongly urge the Indian government to remove AFSPA (Armed Forces Special Powers Act, 1958) from all the Naga inhabited areas immediately. For we do not desire to encounter such inhuman and barbaric acts again in the future,” it stated.
FNBC expressed “deepest condolences” to the families who are mourning the loss of their loved ones.
“We have lost many young men who loved the lord and His church. The hurt is deep and indeed painful, and their absence can never be replaced for each one of them was special in the sight of God. The church stands in solidarity with the families, and our prayers go out to all our Naga brothers and sisters. As believer in Christ, we shall continue to remain strong and be comforted in His promise for deliverance,” the FNBC added.