(Kano) Seven people were killed and 22 abducted in two separate attacks by suspected jihadists in northeastern Nigeria, security sources and residents said on Saturday.
Three farmers were killed on Thursday and 11 abducted by suspected jihadists from the Islamic State in West Africa (Iswap) group near the village of Bulayobe, outside the town of Banki, in Borno State.
The victims had moved away from the town of Banki to clear fields before planting.
“Eight armed Iswap men came on four motorbikes. They rounded up 14 farmers and took them away. The bodies of three of them, bearing bullet holes, were found later,” said Usman Hamza, a militia leader who fights with the army against the Islamists.
A resident of Banki, Kabir Abdu, gave an identical version of events, stating that a friend of his had been killed and his brother was missing.
On Monday, 15 people who cut wood disappeared outside the town of Gamboru, in an area where Boko Haram jihadists are very active.
The next day, four bodies were found in the bush, according to Umar Kachalla, a member of an anti-jihadist militia in Gamboru. He did not know where the others in the group were, but suspected Boko Haram of holding them.
A resident of Gamboru, Idris Halilu, gave the same version of events.
Iswap and Boko Haram jihadists often target people going to cut wood or collect scrap metal, herders, farmers and fishermen whom they accuse of spying on behalf of government forces.
These latest attacks underscore the risks faced by civilians in rural northeast Nigeria, more than 14 years after the start of the Islamist insurgency.
Local authorities, however, have closed many camps for the displaced and are sending people home, saying they must return to their farming activities and return to normal life.
Insecurity is a major concern in Africa’s most populous country.