Communities in the Birnin-Gwari Local Government area of Kaduna State allege the Nigerian Military committed 'genocide' on their areas in a recent clampdown on armed gangs that the military spokesperson had announced was “huge success” during the week.
The communities of Kwalakwangi, Maikyasuwa, and Dokan-ruwa were over a four-day span, from Monday to Thursday of this week, under siege by the military. The Nigerian military was deployed in the area to uproot a series of armed bandit ‘safe heavens’ and safe houses, under the military tactics called, "Operation Restore Peace."
According an eyewitness from the Kwalakwangi village, the military had burnt down the village, and killed all the able-bodied men caught in the cross hairs of their guns. Several of the people shot were not connected to any of the gangs military officials sought.
At least 43 people were buried in Kwalakwangi village on Friday, including the chief imam, and the district Ward head. Apart from the Mosque located in the center of the village, no single building composed of mostly mud houses, was left standing in the village.
In both the Maikyasuwa and Dokan-ruwa villages, women and children are now refugees at Tabanni, Layin-Lasan, and kuyello. Tabanni Alh, the District Head of Abdulhamid Mahuta confirmed the story, but declined further comment, saying he has informed the Birnin-Gwari emirate. Some of the refugees, numbering roughly 123 people, are seeking shelter at the District Head residence.
Community heads in the area have called on the National Human Right Commission, and Human Rights activists to come to their aid, and they seek justice with the threat of the lawsuit to the atrocities committed by soldiers of the Nigerian military.