Train attack in Nigeria: 20 rescued in Edo, two traditional chiefs arrested

Train Attack In Nigeria: 20 Rescued In Edo, Two Traditional Chiefs Arrested

Two weeks after an attack on a train station in Nigeria’s southern Edo state, Nigerian security agents have rescued the 20 kidnapped passengers and arrested two traditional rulers and five other suspects.

Gunmen attacked passengers waiting for a train at Igueben train station on January 7, 2023. They kidnapped 20 passengers including children and demanded $425,000 in ransom.
The Edo State Government on January 19, 2023 confirmed the arrest of two village chiefs in connection with the train station attack and five other suspects.

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Chris Nehikhare, the state’s Commissioner for Communications and Orientation, said seven suspects had also been arrested in connection with the incident.
“Five people and two village chiefs have been arrested in connection with the incident and they are assisting with investigations,” he said.

The Edo Police Commissioner, Mohammed Dankwara, had reported that the joint security forces in the state had rescued 12 kidnapped victims in addition to the four earlier rescued a day after the incident.
The remaining two were rescued on 19 January 2023.

“The joint security forces, acting on technical intelligence provided to the command on the kidnapped victims, stormed Igboha Forest where they rescued the victims,” he said.
This is the second attack on train travelers in Nigeria. The first attack was on March 28, 2022, when terrorists bombed the Abuja-Kaduna train, killing 14 passengers and abducting 64 others.

“After the Abuja-Kaduna train accident, one would have expected the Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC) to provide security in its facilities,” Edo State Governor Godwin Obaseki said.
“It is unfortunate that the Igueben train station only has one policeman guarding the facility,” he said.
Kidnapping for ransom has become a lucrative business in Nigeria. All the country’s 36 states have been declared insecure following the activities of gunmen, bandits and terrorists.

According to the Council on Foreign Relations and National Security Tracker, 4,545 people were killed by non-state actors, while 4,611 others were kidnapped in 2022.
Between January and December 2022, an average of 12 people were killed and 13 people kidnapped daily in violent attacks.

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