Over 70 people have been given a mass burial in Benue State following clashes between nomadic herdsmen and indigenes of three Nigerian States.

The conflicts was sparked when the farming  communities of Benue, Nasarawa and Taraba states revolted against the Fulani herdsmen  in the cause of the new year, with Benue State recording the heaviest part of the conflicts.

The State alone has recorded 80 deaths and 80,000 displaced.

Over 100 people have lost their lives in Benue and Taraba States.

The Nigerian army has said it has installed special forces to all three conflict thorn States to as it states "stem the menace".

"Thousands are attending today's funeral service to honour those killed," Benue's information commissioner Lawrence Onoja told the BBC.

Mr Onuoja also stated that 73 people who lost their lives in the cause of the conflicts are been buried.

He further defended his state's arguable ban on open cattle grazing implemented in November, although Fulani herders have complained sayin the ban is targeted against them unfairly.

"Our economy in Benue State depends on agriculture, take that away and we have a serious problem." he lamented.

Mr Onoja said that herdsman had a "misconception" the law was against them, saying they had not taken the time to look at it closely.

"[Until now] Fulani herders have been a law unto themselves. We want them to adopt ranching. These clashes result from the encroachment of cattle on farmers' land."

The BBC's Haruna Shehu in the capital, Abuja, says Fulani herders' associations have told him they only mount retaliatory attacks when others steal their cattle or kill members of their community.

"They prepare attacks months in advance and enlist fellow herdsmen from as far as Guinea," he said.

The Fulanis are spread across West Africa, from Senegal to Central Africa Republic.

While these tit-for-tat clashes often begin over land, the crisis seems to be taking on an ethnic and religious dimension.

Earlier this week, President Muhammadu Buhari ordered the head of police to relocate to Benue to manage the crisis.

The president's office later confirmed the deployment of special forces to Nigeria's central region in a tweet.

Analysts say the deployment to more states is likely to overstretch the Nigerian military, as it currently has thousands of troops fighting Boko Haram in the north-east.

Many other troops are operating in the oil-rich Niger Delta in the south, where militants are demanding a greater share of the oil wealth.