At least 15 persons have been killed in fresh attacks by bandits on two local government areas (LGAs) across Kaduna State.
Samuel Aruwan, the state Commissioner for Security and Internal Affairs, confirmed the killings in a statement on Wednesday.
According to the commissioner, dozens of the bandits were also neutralised in several locations.
He added that Anaba village in Igabi LGA was attacked, with seven residents killed listed as: Ali Musa, Isa Sharehu, Tijjani Isa, Auwalu Shehu, Hashim Abdullahi, Hassan Saidu and Umar Rilwanu.
The commissioner said many of the houses in the community were burnt down, along with storehouses and barns. About 20 cows were rustled and a number of poultry slaughtered and carted away, he added.
Also, Barinje village in Chikun LGA was attacked, with eight persons killed listed as: Sunday Gwamna, Lawal Jizo, Salha Barau, Sabo Barau, Umaru Barau, Muhammadu Dan Azumi, Zailani Dogara and Jikan Gambo.
“Some residents were abducted, and cattle rustled during the attack. An unspecified number of injured victims are receiving treatment in hospital,” he said.
According to the commissioner, the attacks on these soft targets at Anaba and Barinje villages in Igabi and Chikun LGAs respectively, followed the killing of several armed bandits via targeted air operations.
Air platforms had earlier reportedly conducted armed reconnaissance around Anaba village. The crew observed houses on fire and locals migrating to nearby settlements. Some motorbikes were observed with suspicious movements underneath some trees; probing shots were fired at these.
Herds of cattle were spotted with bandits at Malul Forest and were engaged accordingly, the statement also noted.
Also, air platforms conducted armed reconnaissance over some affected locations. Kawuri, Chikun, Godani, Kusasu, Godani Station, Kwafe, Kuduru, Irina, Chikwale, Kudame, Kwakwau, Beni, Akilbu, Polewire, Rijana, Rugu, Olam farms and adjoining areas were covered.
Bandits in large numbers on motorcycles were sighted on a track leading to Kankomi. They were trailed and engaged by the crew, with scores seen neutralized afterwards.
Similarly, following intelligence of bandits converging at forests in between Maidaro/Damari general area of Giwa/Birnin Gwari LGAs, armed reconnaissance was conducted over the locations, in conjunction with ground troops who conducted cordon-and-search operations in the area.