Katsina is composed of 34 LGAs and its capital is Katsina city. The state’s estimated population was 7 831 319 in 2016.
Violence in Katsina state is often related to cattle rustling and conflict over land and resources. From 2015, attacks by armed groups connected to Fulani herders, vigilantes and criminal gangs, have also spread to Katsina. The main actors in the security incidents include local communal militias, Fulani ethnic militias, or unidentified armed groups. Violence has been concentrated in areas near its boundaries with the state of Zamfara and forest areas have become the hideout and operation bases for armed groups. Criminal gangs operate in the large forests bordering to the west with the Zamfara state. In addition, many groups have declared allegiance to Boko Haram’s leadership and Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for a large-scale attack and kidnapping at a school. The state government deployed police and army forces to secure the area.
Since July 2018, kidnapping and hostage taking have led to a high level of insecurity. Furthermore, farmer-herder conflicts have intensified in the North-West region during the Covind-19 lockdown. There were daily reports on kidnapping, armed robbery and banditry, as well as cattle rustling. Incidents of kidnappings have also led residents in the affected rural communities to flee to the LGA capitals or the state capital. Security incidents in 2020, included (retaliatory) armed attacks and looting by armed bandits against villages and clashes between Nigerian troops and unidentified gunmen. In addition, airstrikes by the Nigerian Air Forces against camps of militias, have been also reported. In December 2020, Boko Haram claimed responsibility for a school attack and kidnapping of more than 300 school children.
During 2020, ACLED reported a total of 210 security incidents (72 battles, 21 incidents of remote violence/explosions, 109 cases of violence against civilians, 8 incidents of riots) in Katsina state (average of 4 security incidents per week). Security incidents took place in 21 out of 34 LGAs, with the largest overall number (42) being recorded in the LGA of Faskari.
The abovementioned security incidents resulted in 995 deaths. Compared to the estimated population in the state, this represents approximately 13 fatalities per 100 000 inhabitants.
From 1 January to 30 April 2021, ACLED reported a total of 41 security incidents (18 battles, 22 cases of violence against civilians, 1 incident of riots) in Katsina state (average of 2.4 security incidents per week). These security incidents resulted in 160 deaths.
The total number of IDPs for Katsina by December 2020 was 121 434, an increase of 52 % compared to data recorded in July 2020, partially explained by the increased intensity and frequency of attacks, according to IOM. No specific data were found for Katsina state with regard to the number of returnees.
Α new humanitarian crisis is emerging in the state of Katsina. Further impact on the civilian population includes destructions of villages, houses, and farms. Incidents of kidnapping along the Katsina’s roads have also been reported.
Looking at the indicators, it can be concluded that indiscriminate violence is taking place in the state of Katsina, however not at a high level. Accordingly, a higher level of individual elements is required in order to show substantial grounds for believing that a civilian, returned to the territory, would face a real risk of serious harm within the meaning of Article 15(c) QD.