Several Christian students were knifed and beaten at a high school in Nairobi, Kenya, after they refused to convert to Islam, reports have said, with clashes leaving 35 students injured.
Morning Star News reports that the brawl took place last week at Jamhuri High School. Several Muslim students apparently complained of discrimination, as the boarding school had designated separate bathrooms and library sections for Christians and Muslims, because of increasing hostilities between the two groups.
A source who wasn’t named explained that a number of those Muslim students attempted to force Christian students to recite the Islamic creed for conversion and undergo Muslim cleansing rituals on Jan. 23, which sparked the fight.
“Some Muslim students forcefully tried to induct Christian students into their Islam faith, and those who refused were knifed, while others were physically beaten,” the source said. “The knives and machetes used are alleged to have come from outside the school.”
The resulting brawl between the two groups left 35 students injured, both Muslims and Christians, who had to be treated in the hospital for stab wounds and dislocated bones.
Jamhuri High School Principal Fred Awuor also had to receive hospital treatment after being injured.
The Daily Nation reported that police are investigating the incident, including how it is that students managed to get their hands on machetes and knives at the school.
Kenya Broadcasting Corporation reported on Tuesday that the high school remains closed, with security guards denying people entry at the compound.
There were a number of violent incidents at Kenyan schools last year, though in one instance in May it was a Muslim teacher who helped save Christians’ lives during an attack by the al-Shabaab terrorist group.
One Christian teacher at Fafi Primary School in Fafi was shot dead when the Islamic radicals attacked, but a Muslim teacher saved another Christian teacher by telling the extremists that he was ready to die with his colleague.
“The al-Shabaab got angry, and told the teacher, ‘We are going to teach you a lesson for protecting the infidels,’ and immediately the two were carried away to an unknown destination,” a source told Morning Star News at the time.
Several Muslims at the school were also beaten after the radicals accused them of housing Christians.
Kenyan Christians have been specifically hunted down and killed by the Somali-based jihadists, who back in April 2015 slaughtered nearly 150 students, most of them followers of Christ, at Garissa University College.
The radical group, which last year was named the deadliest terror group on the continent by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies, killed as many as 4,000 people in 2016 alone.