Molly Kilete, Abuja
The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) said its Air Task Force (ATF) of Operation LAFIYA DOLE has killed 30 terrorists and destroyed several of their hideouts as part of the new ‘OPERATION RATTLE SNAKE’ launched to rout remnants of Boko Haram and ISWAP insurgents.
Director of Public Relations and Information Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola said in a statement:
“The Nigerian Air Force through the Air Task Force (ATF) of Operation LAFIYA DOLE, has launched OPERATION RATTLE SNAKE against terrorists’ elements in the Northeast of the Country.
“The Air Interdiction Operation, which commenced yesterday, 10 December 2019, will target selected locations within the Northeast in order to further degrade the remnants of the terrorists as well as deny them safe havens and freedom of action.
“On Day One of the Operation, air strikes by NAF aircraft resulted in the neutralization of several Boko Haram Terrorists (BHTs) and destruction of some of their structures at their tactical headquarters in Parisu as well as another settlement, Garin Maloma, both on the fringes of the Sambisa Forest in Borno State. The attacks were executed following series of Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) missions, that showed the presence of a significant number of BHT fighters in makeshift structures/buildings under trees spread across the 2 settlements.
“Overhead Parisu, no fewer than 30 terrorists were observed by the ISR aircraft in different parts of the settlement. The attack aircraft dispatched by the ATF to engage the location recorded accurate hits within the target area, leading to the destruction of some of the structures as well as the killing of several terrorists. Other fighters, who attempted to flee while putting up a fight, were taken out by follow on strikes at their hiding places under some trees as well as along the river line at the edge of the settlement. An attack conducted earlier in the day at Garin Maloma similarly resulted in the neutralization of several BHTs.
“The NAF, operating in concert with surface forces, will sustain its efforts to completely destroy all remnants of the terrorists in the Northeast”.