Armed groups have killed 16 people in separate attacks on remote villages, an area plagued by cattle-rustling and kidnappings, in northern Nigeria‘s Katsina state, officials announced. (Image above: illustration).
In separate attacks gunmen on motorcycles stormed the Dantakuri, Tsayau, Barza and Zakka villages on August 19-20, shooting residents and stealing cattle, local authorities reported.
The worst attack happened in Dantakuri, the area’s political administrator Sanusi Dangi Abbas told AFP news agency.
“The bandits killed 11 people in Dantakuri. One person was killed and another injured in nearby Barza,” Abbas said. “In all, we lost 12 people in the attacks which began around 17:00 (16:00 GMT) on Sunday,” he said.
Community of Barza identified the victim as the chief imam of the village.
Katsina state police spokesman Anas Gezawa confirmed the attacks but said he was only aware of casualties from Tsayau, where four people were murdered and several herds stolen.
“I can confirm the killing of four people in Tsayau but we are awaiting reports from the other areas,” Gezawa clarified.
“The bandits carted away some livestock and the villagers pursued them into the forest to reclaim their animals which led to the death of four people from the village,” he added. “We didn’t put up a fight and no one was hurt but we are still taking stock of the animals the attackers took away,” he said.
Katsina state, the birthplace of President Muhammadu Buhari, has been ravaged by kidnappers and cattle robbers in recent months, prompting villagers to form vigils groups to defend themselves.