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Soldiers, community clash leaves five dead

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There was pandemonium yesterday in Kpaidna village in Bosso Local Council of Niger State when a combined team of soldiers and Airforce personnel clashed with the community, leaving five persons dead and two others injured.

The clash occurred yesterday around 1:00a.m. when the military personnel were said to have invaded the community in search of arms.

The two injured were said to be military personnel, though identities of the deceased were yet to be known as at press time . Also, four vehicles belonging to the army were burnt.

It was gathered that the soldiers were in the village on to search for arms after the bloody clash between the community and Fulani herdsmen three weeks ago.

The community, which has been on the alert after the clash, were said to have mistaken the military personnel for suspected herdsmen, hence, the attack on them, which led to the casualties.

When contacted to confirm the report, the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) in the state, DSP Bala Elikana, said the police were not involved in the operation, pointing out that “it was a purely military operation.”

Elikana, however, said one of the two soldiers injured was admitted at the police clinic, while the other is receiving treatment at the Minna General Hospital.

He added that no civilian casualty was recorded.

Also, the Assistant Director, Army Public Relations, Major Njideka Agwu, confirmed the story, saying “we heard there were arms and ammunition in that village and we went for a cordon and search operation.

“Unfortunately, the villagers opened fire on us. We don’t know the number of casualty yet because the information is still sketchy. Both troops and field commanders are still at the location and investigation is in progress.”

Meanwhile, the village has now been deserted as the villagers have fled Kpaidna for fear of reprisal attack by the soldiers to avenge the attack on their men.

Many of the villagers with their luggage on their heads were seen at Gidan Kwanu some 60 kilometres from the scene of the incident in search of safe haven.


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