Nigerian Army Air Strike Kills 85 Villagers Celebrating Muslim Festival

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A Nigerian Army Air Strike accidentally hit a village in northwestern Nigeria killing dozens of civilians celebrating a Muslim festival, local authorities, the military and residents said on Monday.

However, the Army did not provide details or a death toll for the strike late Sunday in Tudun Biri village, Kaduna State, but residents said dozens were killed and wounded.

According to local official: “Muslim faithful observing Maulud were mistakenly killed and many others injured following a military drone attack targeting terrorists and bandits,” Kaduna State governor Uba Sani said, ordering an investigation.

“We buried 85 people that were killed in the bomb attack,” said resident Idris Dahiru, whose relatives were among the dead.

“I was inside the house when the first bomb was dropped… We rushed to the scene to help those affected and then a second bomb was dropped,” he added.

“My aunt, my brother’s wife and her six children, wives of my four brothers were among the dead. My elder brother’s family are all dead, except his infant child who survived.”

Meanwhile, dozens of wounded persons were taken to a teaching hospital in the state capital Kaduna.

A local state security commissioner Samuel Aruwan said following a meeting with army officials and community leaders.

He said the attack left “several citizens dead and others injured” but did not provide a toll.

According to the army, it was a routine mission against militants that “inadvertently affected members of the community,” he said.