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Attack kills 12 in resource-rich Mozambique region

Locals walk along a road passing through a village in Cabo-Delgado, a northern province in Mozambique, on June 11, 2018. (AFP file photo)

An attack by suspected Takfiri extremists has reportedly left 12 people dead in a resource-rich region in northern Mozambique.

“There was an attack in Nangane district, where there are no security patrols,” early on Friday, a police source in Cabo-Delgado Province, who asked not to be named, told AFP on Sunday. “The attackers killed 12 people, mostly women and children.”

The victims were killed with machetes or died when their houses were set on fire by the attackers, said a local journalist, whose name was not mentioned in the report, also according to AFP.

The attack, which took place near the border in the village of Chicuaia Velha, reportedly prompted thousands of local residents to flee and seek safety just a few kilometers away in neighboring Tanzania.

A total of eight people had been killed in two earlier attacks in Cabo-Delgado over the past month.

Police reinforcements deployed to the area to step up security have arrested some 200 suspects.

Oil, gas deposits

The government in Maputo is pushing forward with gas development projects in the resource-rich province.

Authorities say the Takfiri extremists have been purposefully stoking fear among the locals. They say vast gas deposits discovered off the shores of the country could transform the poor nation into one of the world’s largest exporters of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG).

Mozambique plans to export natural gas amounting to tens of billions of dollars over the next three decades.

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