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Gunmen kill 38 civilians in northwest Nigeria in latest bloodshed

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
A Nigerian police armored personnel carrier is parked at the scene of violent attacks at Shasha Market in Ibadan, southwest Nigeria, on February 15, 2021. (File photo)

Gunmen in northwest Nigeria have killed at least 38 people in three separate attacks, in a latest spell of violence to hit the troubled region, local reports said.

Samuel Aruwan, commissioner for Nigeria's northwestern Kaduna state, said the assailants raided the villages of Kauran Fawa, Marke and Riheya in Giwa district, killing at least 38 people and setting fire to farms and properties.

“Security agencies have confirmed that 38 people were killed across the locations attacked,” Aruwan said in a statement, adding that houses, trucks, and cars were also burned, along with agricultural produce at various farms.

Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari condemned the “gruesome nature” of the attacks and called upon security and intelligence chiefs to “do everything they can” to nab the perpetrators.

Earlier, on Friday, nine people were killed across three villages in the same province, according to Aruwan. Sunday’s attack takes the death toll to 47 in recent days.

The latest spell of violence comes two months after an armed raid at a mosque in Mashegu district killed at least 16 people.

The ongoing violence in Nigeria’s troubled northwestern region comes despite authorities deploying thousands of security forces and recent designation of the armed groups as terrorist organizations.

Gangs of thieves and kidnappers have been terrorizing communities in northwest and central Nigeria, where they raid schools, masques, and markets, killing and burning buildings after looting them.

The gangs have been infiltrated by Boko Haram and other terrorist groups, according to reports.

President Buhari has come under intense fire over the worsening security situation across the country.

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