“We lost five policemen in (a) gunfight with the bandits in an effort to prevent them from raiding Gatakawa village,” Isah said. The attackers also killed three civilians from the village, he added. Separately, at least nine people died between Tuesday and Wednesday in attacks on four villages in neighbouring Faskari district blamed on the same gang, local official Musa Ado said.
“Four villages were attacked and a total of nine people were killed, with Ruwan Godiya village losing six people,” Ado said. “A person was killed in each of the other three villages where the bandits looted livestock and other supplies,” he added. Bandits have intensified attacks in Katsina state, operating from hideouts in neighbouring Zamfara state which is their stronghold.
Although the gangs are motivated by financial gains with no ideological leaning, Nigerian officials are concerned about possible ties with jihadists making inroads from the northeast where they are waging a 13-year insurgency.
(The article is authored by AFP. Only the headline has been changed.)