Gang kills 6, kidnaps 100 in northwest Nigeria

An armed criminal gang stormed a community in Nigeria’s northwest state, killing six and kidnapping nearly 100 people, police and locals said on Monday.

Abdullah Saidu, who is from Tudun Doki but now lives in Sokoto, the state capital, told Anadolu that the gunmen kidnapped around 100 people, mostly women, children, and young people.

“So far, approximately 100 people have gone missing as a result of the attack. The bandits kidnapped them, and they have yet to contact anyone in the community,” he claimed.

About a dozen armed men on motorcycles stormed Tudun Doki in Sokoto State’s Gwadabawa District early Sunday morning, just hours before the Eid al-Adha prayers, Muslims’ festival of sacrifice, state police spokesperson Ahmed Rufai told Anadolu over the phone.

“Information received from the Divisional Police Command in the area indicated that six bodies were recovered from the community after the attack and many people were abducted,” Rufai said, hinting that the number of people abducted by the criminals during the attack could be big.

However, he avoided providing an official confirmation of the report of 100 people abducted, saying it could be that number, but the police cannot confirm with certainty.

Later on Sunday, a police search team was dispatched to the area where the criminals were suspected of coming to attack the community but he had yet to receive any additional information from the team, citing the remoteness of the area as a major barrier to communication.

The gunmen opened fire as soon as they arrived in the community, he said, adding that the majority of the victims were shot while attempting to flee to their homes.

Bandit and armed gang attacks have increased in the West African nation, which has also been dealing with terrorist attacks by Boko Haram and the Islamic State in West African Province (ISWAP) for over a decade.

Abubakar Sifawa, a senior research fellow on behavioral patterns and security at the Shehu Shagari University of Education in Sokoto, attributed the increase in attacks on the country’s porous borders and terrorism activities along its border with the neighboring Niger Republic.

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