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TERRORISTS loyal to Islamic State West Africa (ISWAP) and Ansaru were responsible for the destruction of the Abuja-Kaduna rail track.
According to Daily Trust, security agents had in the last few days intercepted and neutralised terrorists attempting to blow up bridges and rail tracks around the Kaduna axis of the rail line.
“These (attacks) have the signature of ISWAP and Ansaru written all over it, bandits want to kidnap and trade human beings for ransom but this is clear terrorism,” it quoted a top security source.
“The aim was to kill the people on the train. But we thank God that they have not succeeded”.
Another top security source told the newspaper that within the last few days, security agents had intercepted information of an attempt to blow up one of the rail line bridges but through concerted efforts, the terrorists could not succeed.
Recall that the Kaduna State Government had admitted growing interaction between terrorists and bandits in the state.
Commissioner of Internal Security and Home Affairs, Samuel Aruwan, said, “Security agencies have been alive to the growing interaction of bandits and terrorists. Many Boko Haram terrorists were intercepted trying to enter Kaduna State. The Ansaru group has also grown in stature and visibility, as evidenced by the slaughter of 21 residents of Inono, Sabuwa LGA of neighbouring Katsina State.”
Train services in the Abuja-Kaduna corridor were partially obstructed Wednesday night after the terrorists reportedly blew a section of the track using dynamites.
The assailants returned in the early hours of Thursday and inflicted serious damage on the rail track, forcing the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) to suspend services.
Though the NRC described the development as an act of vandalism, credible security sources fingered terrorists.
Former Senator representing Kaduna Central, Shehu Sani, who boarded the morning train for Abuja, wrote on his Facebook page that the train he was travelling in nearly veered off the track but “miraculously escaped”.
In reaction, the NRC yesterday announced the suspension of train services due to what it called ‘unforeseen circumstances.
“There was an explosion on the rail track that affected the fuel tank of the locomotive on Abuja to Kaduna fast tram (AK10).”
It said the affected locomotive has been sent to the workshop for assessment and repairs adding that there was no casualty from the attacks. In a phone interview with one of our correspondents, NRC’s Managing Director, Fidet Okhiria, refuted the claim of bandits’ attack.