The leader of Nigeria’s Boko Haram Islamist militants has defended recent attacks on Christians, saying they are revenge for killings of Muslims.
In his first video message, posted on YouTube, Abubakar Shekau referred to attacks on Muslims in recent years in several parts of northern Nigeria.
Boko Haram militants attacked several churches on Christmas Day, killing dozens of worshippers.
This has led to some reprisals in the mainly Christian south.
Mosques in two states have been attacked.
Nigeria, Africa‘s most populous nation with 160 million people, is divided between a largely Muslim north and a south where most people are Christians and some animists.
Thousands of people have fled their homes following the recent attacks, leading some people, including Nigeria’s president and the leader of the country’s main Christian organisation, to make comparisons with the 1967-70 civil war when leaders of the south-eastern Igbo ethnic group tried to secede.