Nigeria is battling an increase in armed robberies and kidnappings for ransom, mainly in northwestern areas, where thinly stretched security forces often fail to stop the abductions.
The latest kidnapping took place in Zamfara state overnight on Friday, said regional police spokesman Mohammed Shehu, adding that investigations were ongoing.
Four residents told Reuters armed men had attacked villages in the Shinkafi area, causing panic and abducting at least 60 villagers before escaping into the nearby forest.
"The armed bandits rode on over 70 motorbikes and each motorbike was (carrying) three people with weapons destroying properties and abducting people," Junaidu Badarawa, one of five people who were kidnapped but later released, said by phone.
source: Reuters with reporting by Maiduguri newsroom Writing by MacDonald Dzirutwe Eduting by Helen Popper