About 30 people were killed Saturday when gunmen, suspected to be Fulani herdsmen, invaded some villages in Barkin-Ladi and Riyom Local Government areas of Plateau State in early morning attacks.
Those killed by the assailants, said to have been well armed and numbering about 100, included two security men, women and children. Many were left injured and several houses torched in the attack which occurred at about 6.30 a.m.
The attack came days after the new National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd), visited the state during which he initiated a dialogue among various stakeholders designed to forge peace and reconciliation.
Vanguard learnt that the assailants, dressed in black, launched attacks on the Berom villages of Kakuruk, Kuzen, Ngyo, Kogoduk, Ruk, Dogo, Kufang, Kpapkpiduk, Kai in Barakin-Ladi Local Government Area.
About 15 people were said to have been killed at Kuzen, eight at Kakuruk and another eight in other villages in the local government.
The attackers were said to have later moved to villages in Riyom LG where they destroyed houses and other property but were successfully repelled by the people who, having got wind of their attack on their neighbors, mobilized and confronted them.
The member representing the two local government areas in the House of Representatives, Hon. Simon Mwadkon, described the attack as unfortunate at a time efforts were on to restore peace to the area.
He said the attack was a vindication of his outcry that there were terrorist elements in the two local government areas which ironically are under a state of emergency.
He confirmed that 20 bodies of those killed had been recovered while efforts were on to recover other bodies. He also confirmed the killing of two security men during the attacks.
It was learnt that men of the Special Task Force (STF) maintaining security in the state moved men into the area to track down the assailants. Residents said they heard multiple gun shots, Saturday evening, in what looked like an exchange between the security men and the attackers.
Media Officer of the STF, Captain Salisu Mustapha, said he was yet to get details of the casualty when contacted.