At least seven people were killed on Wednesday in separate communal clashes involving some rural communities in three Local Government Areas of Benue State.
Daily Trust gathered that six of the deceased were killed at Mbamena Community in Ukum LGA while the remaining one was hacked to death at Tyomu community in Fidi ward of Makurdi LGA.
It was learnt that the Mbamena crisis may have stemmed from an unsettled dispute with their neigbouring Tongov community of Kastina-Ala LGA who allegedly carried out the reprisal.
Some locals alleged that a militia gang from Mbamena who are loyal to a suspected kingpin known as Ujoondo had few days ago invaded the Tongov community in Katsina-Ala and killed the six persons; a development which led to the reprisal on the affected Ukum community.
But the Chairman of Ukum LGA, Tor-Tyokaar Ibellego, confirmed to our correspondent that five people were killed in the clash, which happened on Wednesday morning in his vicinity.
He said the rising insecurity in his domain has become a huge source of worry, stressing the need to tighten the security network saying on the same day, three other persons were killed by alleged Jukun militia in Jootar, another rural community in his domain.
Meanwhile, the police spokesperson in the state, Catherine Anene, who said she was yet to get details of the Mbamena crisis confirmed that one person was killed while others fled Tyomu community in Fidi ward of Makurdi LGA following fresh violent clash among the villagers.
Anene said some arrests have been made in the Tyomu crisis and investigation into the matter was ongoing, adding that security has been beefed up in five settlements of Yogbo, Akile, Gagabe, Angbaye and Tyomu situated on KM 16, along Makurdi-Gboko road.
The police spokesperson however expressed concern that unless the underlying factor of a land tussle among the warring communities will be resolved, the crisis may continue to manifest despite the presence of security personnel deployed to the area.