Nigeria military burns homes after 'pirates' kill six

accreditation
Nigerian Flag. (iStock)
Nigerian Flag. (iStock)

Nigerian soldiers torched more than 20 homes in a community in the oil-rich Niger Delta after "suspected pirates" killed six people, security sources and residents said on Tuesday.

Gunmen on Sunday attacked a gunboat escorting a vessel in the volatile waters off the Nigerian coast, a Nigerian security source told AFP.

"During the ensuing gun battle, four of the soldiers and two civilians on board the vessel were killed," the source said.

Security forces launched a manhunt for the assailants focused on the nearby community of Lutugbene in the wake of the attack.

"Soldiers stationed at the Beneside Flow station on Monday afternoon invaded Lutugbene community claiming to be on the manhunt for suspected sea pirates that attacked their boat," community leader Austin Ozobo told AFP.

"The soldiers ended up burning a minimum of 21 houses."

The security source confirmed the village was targeted but said military personnel "torched houses owned by persons who are sea pirates".

Nigeria's Delta region has long been a hotbed of piracy with armed criminal gangs striking at ships from their hideouts among myriad onshore creeks.

The area is home to most of the country's vast oil reserves but despite decades of production, oil wealth has failed to trickle down to local communities.

The waters of the Gulf of Guinea are some of the most pirate-infested in the world according to maritime security experts.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
What are your thoughts on the possibility of having permanent Stage 2 or 3 load shedding?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
I'll take that over constant schedule changes
13% - 1454 votes
Why are we normalising Eskom’s mess?
72% - 8025 votes
I've already found alternative ways of powering my home/business
15% - 1661 votes
Vote
Rand - Dollar
17.47
-2.2%
Rand - Pound
21.05
+0.1%
Rand - Euro
18.91
-0.2%
Rand - Aus dollar
12.09
+0.1%
Rand - Yen
0.13
+0.1%
Platinum
974.02
0.0%
Palladium
1,623.95
0.0%
Gold
1,865.16
0.0%
Silver
22.35
0.0%
Brent Crude
79.94
-2.8%
Top 40
74,082
+0.6%
All Share
80,241
+0.6%
Resource 10
75,186
+0.7%
Industrial 25
103,461
+0.8%
Financial 15
16,550
0.0%
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.

LEARN MORE