In Kenya, when churches were torched in Garissa and Mpeketoni and people died in the process, people thought it was a war between Christians and Muslims. There rose divisions between these two main religions propagated by terrorists who only thrive in violence.
The aim of the attacks was to bring divisions in the areas that coexistence thrived. Historically, Garissa and Mpeketoni have been two of the most harmonious cosmopolitan towns in Kenya and that did not go well with hate-filled agitators. There is an emotional appeal to religion and the best way to approach it is to use that avenue; they used Islam.
In terrorism, the most affected are the Muslims though. By distorting good and noble doctrines, Islam is portrayed as an evil religion led by insensitive bloodthirsty leaders. This leads to discrimination and eventually Islamaphobia.
Although there are not many cases of violent extremists in Christianity, terror activities led by Muslim-affiliated groups makes the numbers increase. Christians who mistake terrorism for Islam are vulnerable to becoming violent extremists.
Terrorists have rebranded a religion that means peace into war. Dignified terms like ‘God is great’ (Allahu Akbar) have been misused and every time it’s uttered in public people scamper for safety. It is now interpreted as a bomb trigger.
The recent attack on Muslims in Australia inside a mosque is evidence that hatred between Muslims and other people is taking a violent turn. This needs to change before things get out of hand.
Global civil education instigated by Muslims and supported by Christians needs to start to help bridge the gap between. The education is to correct distorted and misleading narrative propagated by terrorists. Fighting and hatred are not allowed in any religion, all religions preach, harmony and coexistence.