After a series of cattle thefts occurred at gunpoint last month, where just about 1,000 oxen were stolen by over 400 dahalo bandits, initial measures were taken to capture the thieves.
Fifty armed military soldiers set off to dismantle the large criminal group in an attempt to reclaim the stolen cattle. During the pursuit, 19 of the soldiers were able to recover 106 cattle, while the other 31 soldiers continued their search for the perpetrators as they fled to the Befotaka region. Following after the bandits, the soldiers found themselves ambushed, with dahalo bandits open firing on the soldiers, spraying them repeatedly with heavy fire arms. Six soldiers were shot to death, with several others severely injured.
In response to the violent shootings, Transition President Andry Rajoelina took action by organizing one hundred more soldiers to return to Befotaka to break up the dangerous group of bandits, and continue recovering the remaining cattle.