The Nigerian troops fighting Boko Haram insurgency in the North East have recorded successes in the last few days by killing a total of 63 insurgents, destroying camps, rescuing 370 hostages and recovering arms and ammunition.
A statement by the acting director of Army Public Relations, Sani Usman Kukasheka, quoted Major General Lucky Irabor, the deputy theatre commander, as saying the ongoing offensive that led to the success began on January 17.
“As part of the promise of the Theatre Command to keep the public informed of our activities, this press conference has been organised to brief on the activities of the troops in the past few days.
“Accordingly, in furtherance of the ongoing offensive operations to clear Boko Haram Terrorist (BHT) in the Northeast, on 17 January troops conducted a clearance operation at Shentimari general area and cleared Boko Haram enclaves and recovered 78 rounds of 7.62mm ammunition.
“Similarly, on 18 January at Chukun Gudu, troops encountered and destroyed terrorist’s camps along Jillam, Bula Butube general areas. During the exchange of fire, 10 terrorists were killed, 2 AK47 Rifles, 2 AK47 magazines, 2 solar panels and 2 GSM handsets were recovered, while 1 Isuzu vehicle was destroyed.
“On 20 January 2016, troops cleared terrorist camps/enclaves at Ngwalimiri and Gazama in Damboa Local Government Area. While conducting operations in Mufurundi village along Damboa-Bale road, our gallant troops intercepted 10 Boko Haram suspects from Bego, Mesemarri and Bale villages carrying bags containing food condiments, soaps, and other items. Suspects are presently undergoing interrogation. Also, troops had an encounter with terrorists during advance from Wajirok to Ajigin. During the encounter, 3 of the terrorists were killed.
“In another development, one of our units located in old Marte repelled an attacked by BHT and in the process, killed 21 terrorists, while 3 soldiers were wounded during the encounter. One Anti Aircraft Gun, 10 AK47 rifles,1 FN rifle,7 x 60mm mortar bombs, 342 rounds of 12.7mm, 507 rounds of 7.62mm ammunitions, 1 Toyota Hilux, 1 Land Cruiser vehicle, 1 Improvised Explosive Device with charger were captured from the terrorists.
“During interrogation, they claimed to have been forced to join the Boko Haram terrorists group and also participated in the Group’s previous attacks at Askira and other locations.
“As about 1719hrs yesterday, 21 January 2016, ahead of Cashew Plantation near Maiduguri, an unknown civilian tried to gain access into the village but was confronted by a civilian JTF. In the process of the ensuing interrogation, he stabbed a member of civilian JTF to death but was shot by another Civilian JTF.
“In continuation of the ongoing operation, troops advancing to clear Dure village, came under Boko Haram terrorists ambush at Rugga Fulani but were cleared. During the encounter, 8 Boko Haram terrorists were killed, 2 AK47 rifles, 2 locally made Dane Guns, 3 AK47 Magazined with 38 rounds of ammunition were recovered. Similarly, a unit of troops cleared Boko Haram terrorists hideouts in Wala, Tirkopytir, and Durubajuwe villages. During the operation, troops recovered 1 rusty General Purpose Machine Gun barrel, 1 grinding machine and 1 locally made Dane gun.
“Equally, troops conducted a fighting patrol in Afe, Kudiye, Souma, Dika, Mijigeta and Mida. During the operation, the team made contact with BHT at Kudiye, Mijigete and 20 BHT were killed, while 3 rifles, 41 motorcycles were destroyed, and 370 hostages rescued and brought to Internally Displaced Persons’ camp at Dikwa. Also, around Huyum, Jeje and Diba villages.
“The terrorists sighting own troops, abandoned their families behind which include 5 women, 12 children. However, own troops killed 4 of the BHTs. The women are currently undergoing interrogation.
“Today 3 suicide bombers attempted to infiltrate into Maiduguri a kilometer ahead of Mafa roadblock. Gallant troop of the theater shot one dead, while the other detonated and in the process killed the third suicide bomber.
“The Theatre Commander Operation LAFIYA DOLE, Major General Hassan Umaru commended the efforts of the troops and renewed call for the troops and the public to be more vigilant and security conscious at all times, particularly at check points, markets, worship centres, motor parks and schools.
“He equally appreciated the support from the public in rendering useful information on the activities of the terrorists. The public would be kept informed of the situation as the need arises,” said the statement.