BAUCHI, NIGERIA (REUTERS) - Around 150 children are missing after armed men attacked a school in northwest Nigeria's Kaduna state, a parent and an administrator said on Monday (July 5).
The attack took place overnight at the Baptist High School in southern Kaduna state, and at least 25 students escaped.
The others are feared kidnapped, Reverend John Hayab, a founder of the school whose son escaped told Reuters.
Police said they would release a statement on the attack later in the day.
Roughly 180 students attended the boarding school and were in the process of sitting for exams, according to Hayab, whose 17-year-old son escaped, and parent, Hassana Markus, whose daughter was among those missing.
Sources told Reuters that security officials had cordoned off the school after the attack, which took place between 11pm on Sunday and 4am on Monday morning.
Armed men, known locally as bandits, have made an industry of kidnapping students for ransom in northwest Nigeria, with Kaduna state particularly hard hit.
They have taken nearly 1,000 people from schools since December last year, more than 150 of whom remain missing.
Kidnappers have also targeted roads, private residents and even hospitals; on Sunday night, gunmen abducted six people including a one-year-old child from a hospital in northern Kaduna state.