Protesters killed in Nigeria

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Three protesters were killed and four others injured when soldiers opened fire on demonstrators in a farming community in Nigeria’s Adamawa state, three sources told Reuters.

Protesters in the north-eastern state were demonstrating against kidnappings for ransom plaguing the area as well as what residents said was harassment by soldiers and police.

“There is a serious demonstration going on due to rampant kidnapping and excessive use of force by soldiers and police,” local resident Musa Mallum told Reuters.

A local leader of the road transport workers union (NURTW) in the area told Reuters by phone the bodies of those killed were being prepared for burial.

DSP Suleiman Y. Nguroje, a police spokesman in the state, confirmed an incident took place, but was unaware of deaths or injuries. Spokesmen for the Nigerian Army did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

In addition to rising kidnappings and violence across Nigeria, Adamawa state is a focal point for violence between farmers and herders. In past years, there have been allegations from locals and campaign groups of human rights abuses by the military. The military previously denied all wrongdoing.