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Edo Commissioner of Police confirms killing of four in Benin

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Edo Commissioner of Police, Lawal Jimeta, has confirmed the killing of four persons in different parts of Benin City and another two in a neighboring village.

The commissioner confirmed the killings to newsmen on Wednesday in Benin and said there was no clue yet concerning motives behind the killings.

He, however, said some persons had been arrested by the Anti-cult Unit of the command, but that he was yet to be briefed fully on the matter.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that a young man was on Tuesday night reportedly shot dead at Ugbague lane by suspected rival cult members.

Another one said to be a youth leader in Ward 12 of Oredo Local Government Area of the state escaped being killed when his assailants also believed to be rival cult groups came for him.

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On Easter Sunday, a young man was reportedly trailed and shot while going to have his bath.

On Monday night, two persons were reportedly killed at separate locations in Egor Local Government Area.

The Easter Monday killings took place along Benin Technical College (BTC) Road and Universal Junction, along Medical Stores Road.

One of the victims identified simply as ‘Odion’ an Auto mechanic, was said to have been shot dead in his workshop on Benin Technical College (BTC) Road, while the identity of the other victim killed at Universal junction could not be ascertained.

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It was gathered that the assailants stormed the workshop in a red-colored Toyota Camry car and shot their victim and immediately zoomed off, leaving him dead.

Meanwhile, two farmers were alleged to have been killed by suspected herdsmen at Odighi Village in Ovia North East Local Government Area of Edo on Wednesday morning.

The victims were said to have gone to the farm to source for food for their families but unknown to them, the suspected armed men laid ambush and shot them.

When NAN correspondent visited the village, one Hilary Omoregie, said to be from Odigutue, a neighouring community to Odighi, said: “I was going to my village this morning when I saw people gathered around the dead bodies.

“I was told the two of them, an Igbira and the other, an Urhobo man, were going to their farm when they were ambushed and shot by suspected herdsmen.

“They have been troubling us, people don’t go to farm again because of consistent attack,” he said.

NAN reports that the two bodies were evacuated by police from Ekiadolor Police Division.

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The Commissioner of Police, who also confirmed the killings, said that they were hunters, who went to the bush the previous night and their bodies were discovered this morning.

Jimeta said that investigations into the incident had commenced .

 

NAN

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Fire crews battle San Diego navy ship fire, 18 sailors injured

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At least 18 sailors were taken to a San Diego area hospital after suffering minor injuries in a large, ongoing blaze aboard the military ship, USS Bonhomme Richard, on Sunday, Navy officials said.

San Diego firefighters arrived at the three-alarm fire on Sunday to find thick black smoke billowing hundreds of feet into the air from several points along the 844-foot (257 m) amphibious assault ship docked at the San Diego Naval base, according to live video footage of the scene.

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Emergency crews in boats were alongside the burning ship, spraying it with hoses.

“Eighteen Sailors have been transferred to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries,’’ Naval Surface Forces wrote on Twitter on Sunday afternoon.

It added “the entire crew is off the ship and all are accounted’’.

Some 160 sailors were aboard when the fire was reported around 8.30 a.m. local time, Naval Surface Forces said.

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Earlier on Sunday, the San Diego Fire-Rescue department wrote on Twitter that there had been an explosion at the ship and they were working with Federal Fire to clear the area.

All San Diego Fire-Rescue responders were accounted for as of 11.19 a.m. (6.19 PM GMT), the department said on Twitter.

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Around noon local time, the department said all its personnel had been instructed to exit the pier, while aerial video footage showed the blaze appeared to grow.

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Army rescues kidnapped victims, recovers weapons in three states

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The Acting Director, Defence Media Operations, Defence Headquarters, Abuja, Brig.-Gen. Benard Onyeuko disclosed this at a press briefing on Sunday in Faskari, Kastina State.

The Newsmen reports that the Chief of Army Staff, Lt-Gen. Tukur Buratai had on July 6 flagged off the Operation Sahel Sanity at Special Army Super Camp in Faskari as part of the Nigerian Army Day Celebration.

Onyeuko said the Chief of Army Staff flagged off the exercise to flush out armed bandits, cattle rustlers, kidnappers and other criminal elements from the North West Zone.

“The troops quickly mobilised to the area and engaged the criminals, neutralising scores in the process.

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“The situation was quickly brought under control and the troops subsequently dominated the area with patrols denying criminal elements freedom of action,” he said.

He said on July 9 while responding to a distress call, troops deployed at Gidan Baure in Jibiya Local Government Area of Katsina  State rescued three young girls kidnapped by armed bandits at Sayau village.

Onyeuko said on the same day, troops also rescued three kidnapped victims in Isa Local Government Area of Sokoto State.

“Two other kidnap victims who were kidnapped on June 1, 2020, at Yayi village in Sabon Birni LGA of Sokoto State have been rescued by the troops.

“All the victims have been handed over to Katsina and Sokoto State Government officials for further action.

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“Receiving a credible intelligence, the troops sprang an ambush at Gidan Jaja in Zurmi LGA of Zamfara, the bandits fled with heavy gunshot wounds, abandoning one AK 47 rifle in the process.

“While on aggressive mobile patrol, our troops intercepted three armed bandits who opened fire on troops.

“During the firefight, one of the bandits was neutralised while others fled in disarray, one AK 47 rifle and one motorcycle were recovered,” he said.

Onyeuko also said on Saturday, July 11,  troops laid ambush between Daki Takwas and Tashar Kuturu villages of  Anka and Talata Mafara Local Government Areas of Zamfara.

He said troops made contact with the bandits who escaped with various degrees of gunshot wounds in the cover of darkness.

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Onyeuko said troops had continued to dominate the area as a means of confidence-building for the residents and farmers to continue their agricultural activities.

He added that items recovered included one motorcycle, 10 Dane guns, one catapult and one knife.

Others, he said,  were one saw, 16 plugs, one axe and three cell phones.

Onyeuko, on behalf of the Chief of Army Staff, commended the troops for their gallantry, successes and the professionalism exhibited within the short period of the operation and urged them not to rest on their oars.

He reassured the people of the North-West Zone of the army’s commitment to restoring peace in the region.

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South Africa issues night-time curfew as coronavirus cases rise

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South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced a new round of coronavirus restrictions on Sunday in response to the country’s rising rate of infections.

“From Monday onwards, a night-time curfew will be enforced between 9 pm and 4 am, while face masks will be compulsory in public places and a ban on the sale of alcohol will be reintroduced.

“The national “state of disaster” is also to be extended until Aug. 12.

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“We are now recording well over 12,000 cases every day,” Ramaphosa said in a televised Sunday evening address to the nation.

He noted that too many South Africans were now relaxing their behaviour after restrictions were eased.

South Africa has confirmed 276,242 coronavirus cases to date, the president said.

The government imposed a nationwide lockdown at the end of March to stem the spread of the virus and give the country time to build up its health infrastructure.

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However, the measures were then gradually eased again in May and June, although the sale of tobacco products has remained banned ever since.

The restrictions have had a devastating effect on the country’s economy, with millions struggling to survive, and levels of poverty and food insecurity dramatically worsening in just a few weeks.

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Even before the pandemic, Africa’s second-largest economy was already in a difficult situation.

With high unemployment rates and brutal social inequality, the country has been struggling for years with structural economic problems and unreliable electricity supply.

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