Airstrikes: Scores feared killed in Zamfara 

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From Maiharaji Altine

Scores of people were allegedly killed in kukawa village of Maradun local government area in Zamfara state during airstrikes by the troops of the Nigeria Army under Operation Hadarin Daji.

An indigene of the village Musa Abubakar, who narrowly escaped told The PUNCH on Friday that, his community were performing Eid El Fitr prayer last Wednesday when the Nigeria air force bombarded the area.

Abubakar said, the air force bombarded the village on that fateful day which had led to the death of scores of people.

According to him, no fewer than 40 people were killed during the bombardment, lamenting that he lost 13 relations in the incident.

He said, “We were performing Eid El Fitr prayer on Sallah day when we saw a plane approaching the area”.

“Immediately the plane approached the Eid praying ground, we heard a terrifying sound and everybody took to his heels”.

“I was one of the lucky ones who escaped unhurt but several people were killed on the spot and many others sustained various degrees of injuries”.

“I lost 13 people who are my blood relations while two others sustained injuries”.

However, another person from the area who sought for anonymity told The PUNCH that, the bombardment of the village by the air force was as a result of gunshots from the suspecting bandits who targeted the military aircraft.

According to him, when the military aircraft was passing over the village, some suspecting bandits fired several shots, trying to bring it down. 

He said, “The aircraft was passing over the village and suddenly the bandits started shooting towards its direction”.

“This had forced the military to drop several bombs in the village during the Eid El Fitr prayer and many people lost their lives”.

Speaking to PUNCH on phone, the spokesperson of the Operation Hadarin Daji, Lieutenant Suleiman Omale said, the military was fighting bandits and not the innocent people of the state.

He added that, he was not aware of any civilian killed during the bombardment.

“We are fighting bandits, not the innocent Nigerians and I am not aware of any civilian that was killed during the operation”.

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