The Police on Thursday said they had rescued 27 kidnapped persons, including five Chinese nationals abducted in Niger.
Force Spokesman, Frank Mba, a Deputy Commissioner of Police, said in a statement in Abuja that the victims were rescued by operatives attached to “Operation Puff Adder”.
Mba said that the Chinese citizens who were earlier kidnapped on April 15, in Bobi, Niger, were rescued on Sunday in Birnin Gwari, Kaduna State.
He said that their rescue followed painstaking investigative efforts, including air and ground surveillance.
The spokesman said that two of the kidnappers died from injuries sustained during exchange of gun fire with the police in the course of the rescue.
He said that the 22 other kidnap victims were rescued in Zamfara and other parts of the country.
Mba said that between January and first week of May, 270 suspected kidnappers and 275 suspected armed robbers were arrested by the police.
He added that 105 assorted weapons and a large cache of ammunition were also recovered from the suspects during the period.
The spokesman said that the acting Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, had reassured the nation that the end of violent crimes and criminal activities was in sight.
“He promises that the force under his leadership will continue to work with other relevant stakeholders in the task of making Nigeria safer and better,” he said.
Mba said that in continuation of the efforts of the police to bring to an end the current internal security challenges, it had rolled out new counter-kidnapping strategies.
He said that the new strategies were targeted at identifying, locating and dismantling kidnapping gangs across the nation and bringing them and their collaborators to justice.
“It is designed to complement and strengthen the ‘Operation Puff Adder’ currently going on in several states of the Federation,” he said
Mba explained that the operation would involve the deployment of undercover operatives, decoy operations and high-level tactical missions.
He said that they would be drawn from the conventional police units, Force Intelligence Unit, Special Anti-Robbery Squads (SARS) Special Anti-kidnapping Squads.
Others, according to him, are Police Tactical Units comprising Police Mobile Force, Counter-Terrorism Unit (CTU) and the Special Forces.