36 victims massacred on Wednesday by armed bandits in Zamfara State

ABUJA, Nigeria–– Local police said on Thursday reported that 18 people are said to have been killed following an attack by criminal gunmen in Nigeria’s northwestern state of Zamfara.

The criminal bandits ambushed a group of local hunters in Birani village located in the Zurmi area of Zamfara.  The ambushed has led to the killings on both sides on Wednesday.

A local police spokesman, Muhammad Shehu, told reporters in the state capital of Gusau that only 18 bodies have been found so far, hinting that more people might have died from the vicious attack.  Other sources say 36 bodies were found and that the police was trying to minimize the death figures.

He said, “It is believed that the bandits took away their own members that were killed.”

Authorities say bush combing has been initiated and will remain in progress by security agencies to further profile the area and to arrest the perpetrators of the attack.

Nigeria faces serious insecurity from both Boko Haram, tribal indifferences and separatists seeking autonomy because of the exploitation of oil fields.