Armed ViolenceNews

Insecurity Worsens As Nigeria Records 736 Deaths, Abduction Victims Double In June

Some of the most fatal incidents were recorded in Benue, Kaduna, Kebbi, Niger, and Ondo states due to terror attacks and communal clashes.

Following periods of improvement, the number of deaths recorded in Nigeria as a result of insecurity spiked in June, as shown by an analysis of data collected by the Nigeria Security Tracker (NST).

Last month, at least 736 people were killed in Nigeria, indicating a troubling decline in security levels across different parts of the country. In May, the death toll, according to the same source, was 594.

The same pattern can be observed in the data regarding the number of people kidnapped, which rose from 227 in May to 534 last month.

Among the fatalities were 432 civilians, 59 security personnel, and three political actors. Others killed during the period were 62 Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists, 11 kidnappers, 10 robbers, and 187 other armed persons.

Some of the most fatal events were recorded in Borno, Benue, Ebonyi, Kaduna, Kebbi, Kogi, Niger, Ondo, and Sokoto states due to terrorist attacks, communal clashes, and boundary disputes.

On Sunday, June 5, terrorists, suspected to be members of the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), attacked a church in Owo, Ondo, Southwest Nigeria, killing 40 people and injuring over 80 others.

“We hid inside the church for 20 minutes, but they attacked people who were already going home. After a while, we opened the door, so we could rescue those who were shot and rushed them to the hospitals,” said Andrew Abayomi, the officiating priest who survived the attack.

The same day, terrorists killed 32 people across three communities in the northwestern state of Kaduna.

On June 12, armed men, said to be herders on motorcycles, killed 37 residents of Igama, a rural community in Benue, and razed dozens of houses. The victims were mostly women and young people. Two days later in Kebbi, terrorists were reported to have killed 30 people in Kebbi and rustled over 2,000 cows.

On the penultimate day of the month, terrorists attacked a mining site in Niger, North-central Nigeria, and killed 34 soldiers, eight policemen, and six civilians. They also abducted four Chinese nationals. The state government reacted by suspending mining operations in three Local Government Areas.

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'Kunle Adebajo

Head of Investigations at HumAngle. ‘Kunle covers conflict alongside its many intricacies and fallouts. He also writes about disinformation, the environment, and human rights. He's won a couple of journalism awards, including the 2021 Wole Soyinka Award for Investigative Journalism, the 2022 African Fact-checking Award, and the 2023 Michael Elliott Award for Excellence in African Storytelling.

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