Nigeria: four dead in attack on an American convoy in the southeast

United States convoy attacked by rebels in southeastern Nigeria on Tuesday, killing four non-Americans and kidnapping three others, official sources said. “There are no US citizens in the convoy,” said Nigerian police spokesman Ikenga Tochukwu, who was confirmed by White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby.

Tochukwu said the gunmen “killed two mobile police officers and two US consulate employees” before setting fire to their vehicle. The incident happened at 3:30 pm. (1430 GMT) in the Ogbaru district of Anambra state on Tuesday, police said. Tochukwu said security forces were deployed to the scene but the gunmen abducted two policemen and a driver.

Rescue Operation

A “rescue and recovery operation” was conducted on Tuesday evening, it added in a statement.
John Kirby confirmed the attack during a press conference in Washington. “An American convoy was attacked. What we know so far is that no American citizens were involved,” the spokesman said.

For its part, the US State Department assured that US diplomatic staff in Nigeria are “working” with Nigerian security services to conduct investigations. “Our staff safety is very important and we take extreme precautions when arranging field trips,” a State Department spokesman said.

Several separatist groups are active in the southeast and have recently stepped up attacks, often targeting police and government buildings. Nigerian authorities attributed the attacks to the Biafra Indigenous Peoples Movement (IPOB), which they consider a terrorist group, as well as its armed wing, the Eastern Security Network.

Ipob still denies involvement in the violence.

Racialism is a passionate issue in Nigeria, where an attempt by military officers to secede from Biafra in 1967 sparked three years of civil war that left more than a million people dead. Ipob leader Nnamdi Kanu is currently in custody and will face trial on charges of treason after being detained abroad and then returned to Nigeria.

The violence was one of many security challenges facing President-elect Bola Tinubu when he took office as leader of Africa’s most populous nation at the end of May. In addition to separatist tensions in the southeast, the Nigerian military is also battling jihadists in the northeast.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *