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Plateau IGP deploys helicopters, special police units to stop killings

Residents in the state have been implored to allow police investigation and the law to take its full course.

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IGP Idris deploys helicopters, special police units to stop Plateau killings play

Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris with President Muhammadu Buhari


The Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, has sent a special intervention force and two aerial surveillance helicopters to Barkin-Ladi, Riyom, and Jos South local government areas of Plateau State following the killing of at least 86 people in 11 communities.

Even though eyewitnesses have reported a death toll of well above 120, the state's police command said on Sunday, June 24, that 86 people were killed in the wave of violence with 50 houses also reported to be burnt.

The attacks took place in Xland, Gindin Akwati, Ruku, Nghar, Kura Falls and Kakuruk in Gashish District, as well as Rakok, Kok and Razat in the Ropp District, leading to subsequent retaliation by locals who reportedly targeted Muslims in some communities.

In a statement signed by Force Public Relations Officer, ACP Jimoh Moshood, on Monday, June 25, 2018, the IGP also deployed five armored personnel carriers, three police mobile force units, two counter-terrorism units, police intelligence unit and conventional police personnel from other states.

ALSO READ: Miyetti Allah says Plateau killings revenge for stealing 300 cows

The Deputy Inspector-General of Police, Department of Operations, Joshiak Habila, has also been directed to relocate to Jos, the state capital, to coordinate and supervise the operation in the troubled state.

ACP Moshood said, "The Police aerial surveillance helicopters and other components of the intervention force are already in the state. Their arrival in the state have  restored peace and prevent further attacks in the affected areas.

"The Deputy Inspector General of Police; Department of Operations is being relocated on the directive of the IGP to Jos, Plateau State to coordinate and supervise the operations on the ground," the statement said.

"The IGP has directed the Commissioner of Police in charge IGP monitoring Unit to lead the Police Special investigation Team to the affected areas and other flash points in Plateau State.

"The investigation Team comprises the Intelligence Response Team (IRT), the Special Tactical Squad (STS) and the Technical Platforms. The team is to carry out a thorough and discreet investigation into the killings and promptly apprehend those responsible.

"The Police Special Intervention Force, also includes personnel of Force Criminal Intelligence and Investigation Department (FCIID), detachment of Police Explosive Ordinance Department (EOD), Police K9 (Sniffer Dogs Section), Conventional Policemen, Special Anti Robbery Squads.

"The team that have started arriving are already working in synergy with the Plateau State Police Command to ensure that the peace and normalcy restored are sustained in the affected areas and other flash points in Plateau State.

"To achieve success in this operation, the team will be proactive and strict in the enforcement of its mandates, Police standard operations procedures and rule of engagement will be fully adhered to.

"The Police Special Intervention Force will ensure the full enforcement of the curfew imposed on the affected areas by the Plateau State Government.

"The personnel of the Police special Intervention Force will carry out twenty four (24) hours surveillance and patrol, stop and search of vehicles, and  suspected locations and hideouts of the assailants.

"The Team will also engage in continuous raids of identified criminal hideouts and black spots, with a view to arrest promptly those responsible for the killings and nip in the bud and prevent any further attack, attempt to attack or cause any form of violence that can lead to killings and other criminalities in the affected areas."

Residents in the state have been implored to allow police investigation and the law to take its full course, and not resort to reprisals.

Members of the public were also urged to use designated numbers to contact authorities with any relevant information. The numbers are 07059473022, 08038907662, 08075391844, and 09053872296.

Herders-farmers conflict

Herders and farmers have clashed for years over the battle for resources as roaming herdsmen tend to graze their cattle on farmlands, leading to tension and sometimes violence that leads to deaths of people on both sides.

Ever since herdsmen were blamed for the death of 73 people in attacks launched in Guma and Logo local government areas of Benue State in the opening days of January 2018, hundreds of people have been killed in similar attacks with Taraba and Benue bearing most of the brunt.

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