ENTERTAINMENT

The Boko Haram militants behead and cut the throats of 43 Nigerian rice farmers and fishermen


The Boko Haram massacre kills at least 110 people: militant Islamists behead and cut the throats of Nigerian rice farmers and fishermen and kidnap their wives and daughters after a barbaric attack

  • The workers were rounded up and slaughtered by militants in Borno state
  • Boko Haram has not taken any responsibility but is believed to be behind the attack
  • Villagers buried the dead on Sunday, but dozens, including women, are missing

At least 110 rice farmers and fishermen were brutally slaughtered and beheaded by suspected Islamic militants in Nigeria.

The workers were handcuffed and had their throats cut in the horrific attack in Borno state.

The attack is believed to have been carried out by Boko Haram, although they do not yet face responsibility, and the villagers buried the victims' bodies on Sunday.

The bodies of 43 farm workers are seen during a funeral in Zabarmari, Nigeria after they were killed by suspected Boko Haram fighters in nearby rice fields

Borno villagers buried the victims on Sunday while security forces searched for the dozen who were still missing. Up to 70 people feared death

Borno villagers buried the victims on Sunday while security forces searched for the dozen who were still missing. Up to 70 people feared death

"At least 110 civilians were ruthlessly killed and many others injured in this attack," said United Nations humanitarian coordinator in the country Edward Kallon in a statement.

The initial tolls showed that 43 and then at least 70 dead were killed by suspected Boko Haram fighters after Saturday's massacre.

"The incident is the most violent direct attack on innocent civilians this year," said Kallon, accusing "non-state armed groups" without naming Boko Haram.

"I demand that the perpetrators of this heinous and senseless act be brought to justice," he added.

The attack is believed to have been carried out by Boko Haram, although they do not yet have to take responsibility

The attack is believed to have been carried out by Boko Haram, although they do not yet have to take responsibility

It took place in a rice field in Garin Kwashebe, a community known for growing rice, on the day the state's residents cast their votes for the first time in 13 years

It took place in a rice field in Garin Kwashebe, a community known for growing rice, on the day the state's residents cast their votes for the first time in 13 years

The bloodshed was concentrated in the village of Koshobe, near the capital Maiduguri in Borno. Attackers were directed against farm workers in rice fields. A pro-government anti-jihadist militia said the attackers tied the workers up and cut their throats.

Kallon said the attackers – "armed men on motorcycles" – had targeted other communities in the region as well.

Borno Governor Babaganan Umara Zulum attended the funeral Sunday in the nearby village of Zabarmari. 43 bodies were recovered on Saturday. The toll could increase after the searches resume.

According to reports, the farmers were rounded up by armed insurgents with at least 30 beheaded people and killed on the spot

According to reports, the farmers were rounded up by armed insurgents with at least 30 beheaded people and killed on the spot

The victims included dozen of workers from Sokoto state in northwestern Nigeria, about 1,000 kilometers away, who had traveled northeast to find work.

Six were wounded in the attack and eight went missing as of Saturday.

Kallon, citing "reports that several women may have been abducted", called for her immediate release.

Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari condemned the attack on Saturday, saying, "The whole country was wounded by these senseless murders."

A huge crowd of mourners attended the funeral, while dozens more are feared missing while security forces search for them

A huge crowd of mourners attended the funeral, while dozens more are feared missing while security forces search for them

Federal lawmakers said the farmers were attacked for disarming and arresting a Boko Haram gunman who was torturing them on Friday

Federal lawmakers said the farmers were attacked for disarming and arresting a Boko Haram gunman who was torturing them on Friday

The attack came as voters were voting in lengthy local elections in Borno state.

The polls have been repeatedly postponed as attacks by Boko Haram and a rival dissident faction, IS-affiliated Province of Islamic State West Africa (ISWAP), increased.

The two groups were accused of increasingly attacking loggers, farmers and fishermen who they accused of spying for the army and the militia affiliated with the government.

Last month, Boko Haram militants slaughtered 22 farmers working in their irrigation fields near Maiduguri in two separate attacks.

At least 36,000 people were killed in the jihadist conflict in which around two million people had to flee their homes since 2009.

The violence has spread to neighboring Niger, Chad and Cameroon, prompting a regional military coalition to fight the militants.

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