103 feared killed as gunmen invade Katsina communities

Fulani grazing

The gunmen are believed to be cattle rustlers.

Scores of gunmen, believed to be cattle rustlers, have attacked villages in Katsina State killing about 103 people, residents have told PREMIUM TIMES.

Residents said about 100 armed men on motorcycles on Tuesday and Wednesdayevening invaded Kurar Mota, Marabar Maigora, Sabon Layin Galadima, Unguwar Doka, and Maigora, all in Faskari Local Government Area of Katsina State.

A witness who narrowly escaped and later returned to his village told PREMIUM TIMES on Thursday morning that he attended the burial of 27 people in his hometown, Maigora. He said he later attended the burial of another 21 people at Sabon Layin Galadima; while 40 people were killed at Marabar Maigora; 7 in Kurar Mota and 8 in Unguwar Doka.

Many of the victims, among them women and children, are believed to have been set ablaze inside their houses. The witness, who did not wasn’t to be named for security reasons, said they believed the attackers were cattle rustlers on a reprisal mission as many of them had been arrested and handed over to the police in recent times.

Efforts to speak to the spokesperson of the Katsina police, Aminu Abubakar, on the current situation in the area and the official casualty figure have been unsuccessful as his telephone number is not reachable; although the BBC Hausa Service quotes a federal lawmaker from the area, Abbas Machika, as saying 67 people were killed in the attack.

Details later…