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Religious Violence on the Rise in Zanzibar

Zanzibar was once a tourist paradise, but sectarian violence is rapidly turning it into a no-go zone. The BBC reports that Rev. Joseph Mwagambwa, an elderly Roman Catholic priest, was attacked with acid and is now being treated at a local hospital. More:

It follows a similar attack on two young British women there last month.

Tensions between the majority Muslim population and Christians have been on the increase in recent years, as well as on mainland Tanzania […]

It is the latest in a series of assaults on religious figures in the country and the fifth acid attack since November, when a Muslim cleric was hospitalised with acid burns.

In a sign of further tension, a Catholic priest was shot dead in February.

Clear across Africa, where Christianity and Islam meet, there is a belt of violence in which followers of both religions have turned to militancy. In recent years in Zanzibar, for instance, radical Wahhabis have started funding extremist madrassas. Semi-autonomous Zanzibar is almost 99 percent Muslim, but the rest of Tanzania is arguably a majority Christian country.

In Zanzibar, as throughout much of Africa, the Middle East, and even parts of Europe the 21st century is fast becoming an age of religious strife and persecution.

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