Nigerian North-central and Northwest states have witnessed a spike in terror with hundreds of deaths and kidnap victims in the last 18 months according to tracked data from the Nextier Violent Conflict.
The insecurity crisis has spread across regions in Benue and Niger states, making them among the top five most violent Nigerian states in 2022.
According to the database, Niger State has witnessed increased banditry that has seen the state become the most violent Nigerian state between Jan. and May 2022, from a fifth position recorded last year.
During the first five months of 2022, the state has recorded up to 602 deaths.
However, the Nextier Database indicates that Niger State has previously witnessed a spike in terror attacks. In 2021, Niger State recorded 322 deaths in 55 incidents.
Tracked data also shows that Zamfara State was Nigeria’s most violent state, with 848 deaths in 71 incidents. Kaduna and Borno states follow from a distance with 550 and 481 deaths.
Benue State dropped from the top five most violent states for the first five months of 2022. However, other states on the top five most violent states in 2021 maintained their place.
The new violent states have been linked to attacks from terror groups notorious for moving in motorcycles to terrorising communities causing widespread violence, displacement, and humanitarian crisis.
The Database also shows that some attacks resulted in large-scale kidnappings. Within the year 2021, 2,012 persons were kidnapped from these states. And from Jan. to May 2022, 900 cases of kidnapping were recorded across these states.
In the first half of 2022, Plateau State became one of Nigeria’s most violent states, statistically speaking.
Beyond Nigeria’s top five most volatile states in the first five months of 2022, the database revealed that other states across the country are witnessing multiple attacks, especially in Southeast Nigeria, ‘unknown gunmen’ (UGM) and violent pro-secession agitators have made the region unsafe.
“Consistent violent attacks have occurred, especially in Anambra and Imo states. The worst-hit of the violence are thousands of Nigerians that died from the terror, those kidnapped or forced into displacements where they face a humanitarian crisis,” Nextier said.
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