At least 61 kidnapped by gunmen in Nigeria, residents say

2024-03-13 09:52:21

KADUNA, Nigeria - Gunmen in Nigeria kidnapped 61 people from a village in northern Kaduna state, days after nearly 300 students went missing in an attack by an armed gang, residents said on Tuesday.

Armed groups, known locally as bandits, have wreaked havoc for years in northern Nigeria where they target villagers, motorists on highways and students from schools for ransom.

Gunmen attacked Buda community around midnight on Monday, firing sporadically, a tactic used to scare, residents said. The kidnappings often happen in remote communities, leaving residents helpless.

Resident Lawal Abdullahi said he was away when the gunmen struck but his wife was among those taken.

"My wife is among the 61 people those bandits kidnapped. We are still expecting them to call for ransom as usual," Abdullahi told Reuters by phone.

Buda is 160 km (100 miles) from Kuriga town, where schoolchildren were seized last week.

Kaduna's internal security commissioner and police spokesperson did not respond to requests for comment.

"We have been experiencing these attacks for a long time. The situation has become worse, forcing many residents and farmers from villages to flee to less dangerous places," another resident, Danjuma Sale, said.

(Writing by MacDonald Dzirutwe, Editing by Cynthia Osterman)

2024-03-13 News