A high school in northern Nairobi, Kenya, has been closed indefinitely after Muslim students reportedly beat and knifed Christians to force them to convert to Islam on Jan. 23, according to a source.
Speaking to Morning Star News under condition of anonymity, a campus source said the Muslim students at Jamhuri High School tried to get their Christian counterparts to recite the Islamic creed and perform Muslim cleansing rituals. Prior to the incident on Tuesday night, the boarding school had to allot separate bathrooms and library spots for Christians and Muslims because of the increasing tension and hostilities.
"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 told the publication. "The knives and machetes used are alleged to have come from outside the school."
The brawl resulted in the injury of 35 students, as well as of school principal Fred Awuor, who had to be taken to the hospital to be treated for his injuries. Police have already launched an investigation into the attack, but the school has been closed for an indefinite period of time.
On Jan. 30, four of the students were charged with assault as well as causing bodily harm in connection with the incident the previous week. They faced Chief Magistrate Francis Andayi at Milimani Law Courts and pleaded not guilty to the charges, Citizen TV reported.
In addition, the four students were freed after posting bond of 20,000 Kenyan shillings (around $196) each. They also requested leniency from the court since they were scheduled to take their final exams later this year.
Meanwhile, security guards at the school told Kenya Broadcasting Corporation that they had been instructed not to let anyone inside the campus premises. They also confirmed that there were no students inside.
As of this reporting, there is still no confirmation on when classes will resume at the Jamhuri High School.