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3 Catholic Seminarians Abducted by Gunmen in Nigeria’s Northwest 

Gunmen kidnapped three student priests from a Catholic seminary in Nigeria’s northwest Kaduna state on Tuesday, police and school officials said.

According to the Rev. Joseph Hayab, chairman of the Kaduna state chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria, the assailants stormed the Christ The King Major Seminary late Monday night and opened fire at the cafeteria where five of the students were sitting after dinner.

“Before they (the students) knew it, these gunmen had arrived, surrounded them, and kidnapped them.” “They later released two and went away with three,” Hayab explained.

According to police spokesman Mohammad Jalige, security forces have been deployed “to comb the nearby bushes” in an attempt to rescue the three abducted seminarians.

According to school officials, six seminarians were injured in the attack.

The school is housed in the St. Albert Institute For Higher Education, which is primarily populated by seminarians preparing for the Catholic priesthood.

The three students kidnapped are in their final year of studies before becoming priests.

The school is about 230 kilometers (142 miles) from Kaura rural area in Kaduna, where at least 40 residents were killed two weeks ago when bandits stormed remote villages in the area.

Kaduna, like the majority of Nigeria’s northwest and central states, has experienced an increase in violent attacks by armed groups operating in remote forests.

According to security experts, the gunmen are mostly young men from the Fulani ethnic group who were previously cattle herders and are embroiled in a decades-long conflict with Hausa farming communities over access to water and grazing land.

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Nigeria’s security forces are already stretched thin after a decade-long battle against the Boko Haram insurgency in the country’s northeast.

The military launched special security operations across the country last week in an attempt to restore peace in violent hotspots.

AP News

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