File photo. Photograph:( AFP )
Around 100 cattle thieves on motorcycles opened fire on the congregation, killing at least five worshippers and kidnapping nearly 18
A group of gunmen attacked a mosque as the worshippers were observing their weekly Friday prayers in a remote Dutsen Gari village in Maru district.
Around 100 cattle thieves on motorcycles opened fire on the congregation, killing at least five worshippers and kidnapping nearly 18, the local police reported on Sunday.
"The bandits killed five worshippers and kidnapped 18 others, including the imam," state police spokesman Mohammed Shehu told AFP.
The incident happened in northwestern Nigeria's Zamfara state. While the local police is claiming abduction of 18 worshippers, local residents are disputing the claim and have said more than 30 people have been kidnapped.
"The gunmen attacked the mosque while the imam was delivering the sermon and took away more than 30 people, including the imam, after shooting dead five worshippers," one resident, Ibrahim Altine, told AFP.
This incident has not been a work of the Boko Haram jihadists. This group, reportedly, has no ideological leanings but the terror being spread by the group is increasing on an alarming rate. The government has been trying to bring peace in the region as the gang maintains its camps in the Rugu forest, raiding villages, stealing cattle and kidnapping local residents for ransom and looting food supplies. However, the local authorities have faced to reach a conclusion in the peace talks.