ABUJA: At least 23 people were killed following an attack by gunmen who invaded a village in Nigeria's northwestern state of Zamfara, local authorities said today.

The attackers rode on motorbikes and shot indiscriminately at residents of Kwanar Dutse village located in Maru district of the province last weekend, said Salisu Isa Dangulbi, the most senior government official in that district.

"It was a horrifying experience that lasted for so long. The attackers were in charge for more than two hours, killing our people and stealing from them," the official told Xinhua.

Zamfara State police spokesman Sanusi Amiru said only a dozen corpses were found by a team of policemen dispatched to the area to restore law and order.

"We are still investigating the attack and hope to apprehend the perpetrators," the police officer said.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack but local residents are suspecting Boko Haram, a Nigeria-based terror group which has spread its tentacles across the Lake Chad Basin.