Jibiya, a Nigeria-Niger border town, is one of the major targets of kidnapping and banditry activities.
AROUND 40 Muslim worshippers were abducted on Monday by armed bandits while observing midnight prayers for Ramadan at a mosque in the town of Jibiya in Nigeria’s Katsina state.
Citing eyewitness accounts, Nigerian news outlet Platinum Post said dozens of gunmen attacked the mosque at around 2am on Monday during Tahajjud prayers. Tahajjud is a special Islamic prayer mostly held during the Ramadan fast and falls between the last night prayer (Isha) and the early morning prayer (Fajr).
Jibiya a town on the border between Nigeria and Niger, is one of the main targets of kidnapping and banditry activities.
According to the Daily Nigerian, resident Lawal Jibiya said neighbouring villagers raised the alert about the impending attack after sighting the bandits heading towards the town.
The New Watcher.com reported on Monday that a total of 47 people including women and children were whisked away by the gunmen into the dreaded Rugu forest.
The online publication quoted an eyewitness as saying seven people later returned after possibly being voluntarily released by the gunmen.
In November, at least five Muslim worshippers were killed and more than 30 others kidnapped when gunmen attacked a mosque during prayers in Zamfara state.
News broadcaster Al Jazeera reported that about 100 cattle thieves on motorcycles opened fire on a Muslim congregation in the remote Dutsen Gari village in Maru district as residents were observing weekly Friday prayers.