MAIDUGURI, Nigeria: Suspected Boko Haram gunmen have reportedly kidnapped 20 women from a nomadic settlement in northeast Nigeria near the town of Chibok, it was reported Monday.
Chibok is the name town where the Islamist militants abducted more than 300 schoolgirls and young women on April 15.
Alhaji Tar, a member of the vigilante groups set up to resist Boko Haram’s attacks, said the men arrived at noon Thursday in the Garkin Fulani settlement and forced the women to enter their vehicles at gunpoint. He said they drove away to an unknown location in the remote stretch of Borno state.
Tar said the group also took three young men who tried to stop the kidnapping. “We tried to go after them when the news got to us about three hours later, but the vehicles we have could not go far, and the report came to us a little bit late,” he said.
The Nigerian military has come under rising criticism from Nigerians who say they’re not protected by the security forces, left to fend off attacks by Boko Haram on their own.
Nigeria’s second highest Islamic authority, the emir of Kano, was named Sunday as Lamido Sanusi – a key position in defying Boko Haram.
Clashes broke out in Kano Monday as hundreds of supporters of the newly appointed emir battled with backers of his rival for the key post.
An AFP reporter in the ancient city said people turned out in force wearing white robes and red caps in solidarity with Sanusi.
But as they headed to the state government headquarters, they came under attack from a rival crowd out in support of Sanusi’s rival for the role, the late emir’s eldest son, Aminu Ado Bayero.
The reporter said he saw Sanusi supporters covered in blood and Bayero’s backers armed with machetes, sticks and clubs. No soldiers were seen, and unarmed traffic police and the city’s so-called “morality police,” the Hisbah, were trying to restore order.