Molly Kilete, Abuja
The Nigerian Army says soldiers on counterterrorism operations in northeast Nigeria have killed three terrorists, seizing two gun trucks and anti-aircraft guns in renewed clearance operations against Boko Haram and ISWAP insurgents.
Boko Haram and Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) fighters were said to have been killed in the past few days, with a large cache of arms, ammunitions, vehicles and other operational tools recovered from them.
Acting Director (Army Public Relations) Colonel Saghir Musa said the soldiers from 112 Task Force Battalion also foiled an attempt by the terrorists to attack Mafa, a town in Borno, on Monday, June 24.
Saghir in a statement said that over 100 persons held hostage by the terrorists, among them women and children, were rescued by the soldiers.
The statement reads:
“Following sustained robust and aggressive clearance operations in recent days, troops had recorded tremendous successes in the fight against terrorism and insurgency in the North East. Dozens of Boko Haram Terrorists (BHTs) and Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) fighters were annihilated, large cache of assorted arms, ammunition and so many variants of gun trucks and other fighting vehicles were captured.
“Additionally and most importantly, the operation resulted in the rescue and eventual liberation of over 100 women and children from the grip of the criminals/terrorists.
“Therefore, in order to consolidate on the numerous successes so far achieved, the rugged troops of 112 Task Force Battalion deployed at Mafa in Borno State had effectively dealt ruthlessly with members of BHTs/ISWAP terrorists in Mafa, Mafa Local Government Area of Borno State, when some terrorists attempted to attack Mafa on 24 June 2019.
“The terrorists failed attack on Mafa was as a result of available intelligence indicating the desperate longing for food and other logistics by terrorists necessitated by the recent, incredibly tireless and ferocious troops’ operational exploits.
“During the failed attack, terrorists in 5 gun trucks and several motor cycles were seen. Consequently, the troops reacted swiftly with heavy fire power forcing the terrorists to scamper for their dear lives, and recovered 2 Gun Trucks mounted with Anti Aircraft Guns and a motorcycle and the extermination of three (3) terrorists. There were indications that some of the insurgents members were wounded in an exchange of fire.
“The General Officer Commanding (GOC), 7 Division and Commander Sector 1 Operation Lafiya Dole, Brigadier General Abdulmalik Bulama Biu had since visited the conflict location with reinforcement.
“While being conducted round the camp to assess the situation, the GOC urged the troops to remain focus and not to be carried away by the successes. He directed them to redouble their efforts and doggedly maintain the momentum until they win the war on terrorism for Nigeria through total victory against the bandits.
“Similarly, he assured them of the Chief of Army Staff Lieutenant General Tukur Yusuf Buratai’s continued appreciation and support in the collective struggle to crush the insurgency”.