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Birnin-Gwari has recorded several attacks by armed bandits alleged to be cattle thieves and other criminal gangs this year.

The number of lives lost in the attack on Birnin Gwari local government area of Kaduna state has risen to 45.

"The 45 bodies were found scattered in the bush".

According to Channels Television, the attackers, who reportedly came from neighboring Zamfara State, struck the village around 7:00 pm. "The bandits pursued residents who mobilised to defend the village after overpowering them", a member of the civil militia was quoted as saying by news agency AFP.

Kaduna police, in its statement, said it has taken cognizance of the murders and launched an operation to crackdown on the armed bandits involved in the crime.

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He commiserated with the people of Birnin Gwari, while assuring them that the engagement between the state and federal governments on the issue, had yielded positive result.

The killings follow the death of at least 25 people in separate attacks in northern Nigeria since the beginning of May.

Nigeria is in the grip of a security crisis as nomadic herders and sedentary farmers fight over land in an increasingly bloody battle for resources.

Numerous victims are reported to be members of a self-defence vigilante group, which was set up to defend villages in the area. President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the establishment of a permanent battalion of the Nigerian Army in the Birnin Gwari general area.

The military and police are fighting Boko Haram jihadists in the north, militants and pirates in the oil-rich south, a simmering separatist movement in the east as well as the bloody conflict between herdsmen and farmers spanning the vast central region.