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Nigeria reports 140 villagers killed by gunmen

A burnt out car and a motorcycle are seen following the attack. Associated Press

Nigeria reports 140 villagers killed by gunmen

Gunmen in central Nigeria attacked 17 communities over the weekend, killing at least 140 people and burning down most houses in the area, Plateau State Gov. Caleb Mutfwang said on a local television broadcast. Amnesty International Nigeria’s office confirmed the death count, though local workers and officials suspected the death toll could be higher as some people were still missing. The bodies were found across Bokkos and Barkin-Ladi, Christian-dominated areas of Plateau in Nigeria.

Who caused the deaths? As of noon Tuesday, no group had claimed responsibility for the attacks. The head of the local government in Bokkos referred to the attackers as “bandits” who launched “well-coordinated” attacks across the communities. Before being elected earlier this year, Nigerian President Bola Tinubu promised to address security challenges nationwide, including conflicts in the northern region. He strongly condemned the attacks in a statement Tuesday, promising justice for victims and relief for the area.

Dig deeper: Listen to Onize Ohikere’s report on The WORLD and Everything in It podcast about religious freedom worldwide.

Tobin Jacobson

Tobin Jacobson is a student at Patrick Henry College and the World Journalism Institute.

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