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Bandits abduct 40 Muslim worshippers during prayer session in Katsina

By News Desk

No fewer than 40 Muslim worshippers were abducted by armed bandits while observing Tahajjud, a midnight prayer observed during the Holy Month of Ramadan, at a mosque in Jibiya town of Katsina State.

It was gathered that the gunmen stormed the religious facility around 2 am on Monday and whisked away the worshippers in a gestapo style.

It was learnt that the kidnappers abducted 47 congregants, including women and children, but seven among the victims later escaped and returned back to the area.

After a thorough headcount, 40 persons were established to have been missing while all other persons present at the prayer session have been accounted for.

Giving details about the attack, a resident identified as Lawal Jibiya, said that neighbouring villagers alerted them about the impending attack, after sighting the movements of the bandits heading towards the town.

He said that hundreds of youth and local vigilante group in the town were on alert and ready to confront the bandits, but the assailants changed their route and entered the town from the western entry point.

“We were expecting them from the eastern entry point through Daddara, Kukar Babangida or Magama but this time they proceeded beyond the town and camped at Jibawa.

“From Jibawa they then went round to the western entry point near Yunusa Dantauri Hospital and attacked a mosque on the outskirt of the town,” the witness said.

According to him, the bandits did not fire a single shot until they finished the operation.

Jibiya, a Nigeria-Niger border town, is one of the major targets of kidnapping and banditry activities.

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