Nigerian police on Wednesday confirmed 5 bandits were killed when security operatives including the army thwarted an attack in the northwestern state of Katsina.

One civilian was shot dead by the bandits during the gun duel on Tuesday at Tsaskiya community in the Safana local government area of the state, said Gambo Isah, a spokesman for Katsina police.

Three women, who had hidden in a bush during the attack, were kidnapped as the bandits retreated through the same bush, said Isah.

According to him, the bandits numbering over 200 and armed with sophisticated weapons, had clandestinely attacked the village through three entry security barricades.

Many of them escaped with gunshot wounds after the security forces thwarted the attack, he said, adding a search party has been combing the nearby bushes with a view to rescue the kidnapped women and arrest the injured bandits.

The northwest region of the country had been wracked by years of violence.

Banditry, kidnapping and other criminal activities have recently become rampant in the northwest region.

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