Please stop insulting our intelligence.

(CNS News) – Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Johnnie Carson said Monday that “religion is not driving extremist violence” in Nigeria–just one day after a Christian church conducting an Easter service was targeted by a car bombing that left 39 dead.

Similarly, on Christmas Day, the Nigerian Islamist terrorist group, Boko Haram, attacked a Catholic church in that country, killing more than 40 people.

“I want to take this opportunity to stress one key point and that is that religion is not driving extremist violence either in Jos or northern Nigeria,” Assistant Secretary of State Carson said Monday at a forum on U.S. policy toward Nigeria held at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, D.C.

“While some seek to inflame Muslim-Christian tensions, Nigeria’s ethnic and religious diversity, like our own in this country, is a source of strength, not weakness,” he added,  “and there are many examples across Nigeria of communities working across religious lines to protect one another.”

On Easter Sunday a church in Kaduna, Nigeria, was targeted by a suicide bombing that killed 39 and wounded dozens. Though no organization has yet claimed responsibility for the attack, it is suspected that Boko Haram, the Islamic terrorist organization, was behind it.