“We deplore and condemn all acts of barbarism committed in Cabo Delgado, defenseless people are killed, injured and abused. They see their possessions plundered, the privacy of their homes violated, their homes destroyed and the corpses of their family members desecrated,” the bishops commented in their April 16 declaration, which was obtained by Aid to the Church in Need.
Militants invaded Palma March 24, seizing the city, and attacking and destroying shops, banks, and government buildings. They also attacked convoys trying to escape the town.
Dozens of people were killed in the attack, according to local officials, including seven foreigners. At least 11,000 locals fled as a result of the insurgency.
The attack is part of a years-long conflict with Islamist extremists in the region. According to the BBC, more than 2,500 people have killed in the fighting since 2017, and 700,000 displaced.