The recent surge of terror and gang-related actions conducted by both Islamic State jihadists and bandits in Nigeria’s northeastern and northwestern regions has generated concerns among Nigerian officials.
In terms of security, the recent spike in kidnappings in both regions is causing concern.
They cautioned that this might complicate the mission of Nigeria’s security forces, who are now engaged in a large-scale operation against both Islamists and criminal gangs known as bandits in Borno state.
Nigeria’s immigration head, Muhammad Babandede, issued a note on July 23 warning of a huge “flow of bandits from Zamfara in the northwest towards Borno region, seeking intensive training by Boko Haram.”
Nigerian forces killed 78 gunmen, often known as bandits, in northeastern Zamfara state on Thursday during military operations that included airstrikes, according to the air force.
For years, heavily armed bandits have terrorized northwest and central Nigeria, but in recent months, the gangs have increased their attacks on schools, abducting hundreds of kids for ransom and triggering a military response.
The Nigerian military arrived in the region in 2016, and a peace agreement with bandits was struck in 2019, but attacks on communities have continued.