Page last updated at 16:05 GMT, Monday, 21 December 2009

Nigeria herders and farmers clash in central Nasarawa.


At least 30 people have been killed in clashes between herders and farmers in Nigeria's central Nasarawa State, witnesses say.

Local people have described armed men driving from house to house shooting. Farms and homes have been destroyed in the remote village of Udenin Gida.

The fighting follows weeks of tensions between the two groups.

Nasarawa is in Nigeria's "Middle Belt" where rival ethnic groups often clash over land and other resources.

Reporters who have visited the village say they counted up to 50 dead bodies, many of whom they say are women and children.

The village is now under the control of the police.

BBC Nigeria correspondent Caroline Duffield says the conflict between ethnic Fulani herders and farmers has been partially caused by climate change.

Environmentalists say the Sahara Desert is creeping south by as much as 10 miles (16km) a year.

This has increased competition between rival groups for access to land.

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