The military says it has eliminated 92 Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists and 104 bandits in its ongoing counter -insurgency and anti-banditry operations across the North East and North West in the last one week.
The Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. John Enenche, disclosed this while giving an update on the Armed Forces of Nigeria operations between July 2 and 9 at a news conference Thursday in Abuja.
Enenche disclosed that in the North East, both the land and air components of Operation Lafiya Dole had continued to unleash massive onslaught against the terrorists from all fronts and recorded huge successes.
He said that troops’ encounters with the criminal elements resulted in the destruction of their structures and equipment, as well as the capture of arms and ammunition during the period.
According to him, the troops also captured some criminal elements and spies as well as the rescue of 35 captives, while four terrorists surrendered to them.
“Between July 2 and 3, the Air Task Force conducted comprehensive precision strikes, to mark the launching of its subsidiary Operation LONG REACH II on the fringes of the Sambisa Forest in Borno.
“The massive airstrikes resulted in the obliteration of BHT structures used as a meeting venue at Mainyakare Village leading to the killing of several of their fighters.
“More of these criminal elements were also killed and their logistics facilities destroyed in devastating air strikes executed at Mina on Gulumba Gana-Kumshe Axis in the Northern part of Borno.
“A total recorded number of 92 enemies of our country were deleted in the North East Zone within the period under review,” he said.
In the North West, Enenche said the troops of Operation Hadarin Daji killed 58 armed bandits in Katsina and Zamfara States with others escaping with gunshot wounds during the period.
He said that three repentant bandits embraced peace and surrendered to the troops with their arms and ammunition.
According to him, 367 cows and 184 sheep rustled, were recovered during the period.
“Interestingly, a total of 104 bandits were deleted from this zone of the country for the period under review.
“In the North-Central Zone, peace is gradually returning to the troubled locations while the confidence of the local populace is being enhanced.
“Furthermore, farmers are gradually returning to their farms as a result of troops’ patrols in the hinterlands to deny armed herdsmen, rustlers and other criminals, freedom of action,” he added.
In the South-South Zone, Enenche said the Maritime Component of Operation Delta Safe impounded 565,000 litres of suspected illegally refined AGO in Delta and Rivers States during the period.
He added that the troops of Sector 1 in conjunction with Forward Operating Base ESCRAVOS also deactivated all illegal refining sites identified within Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) pipeline general area.
“A total of 17 illegal refining sites were deactivated at Agor-Illa Warri Southwest Local Government Area while 30,000 litres of illegally refined AGO and 125.7 barrels of stolen crude oil were impounded during the operation.
“In another development, on July 2, Forward Operating Base ESCRAVOS took custody of TUG GULF EAGLE with 10 crew from Nigerian Navy Ship BOMADI.
“The vessel was arrested by Nigerian Navy Ship BOMADI off Ramos River Entrance for operating without her Automatic Identification System.
“At the time of arrest, the vessel had 125,000 litres of AGO.
“The vessel was subsequently moved to NNS DELTA for further investigation,” he said.
Enenche said the Military High Command commended the troops and personnel of other security agencies involved in various operations across the country for their commitment and professionalism.
According to him, troops are further encouraged to remain resolute and decisive in curtailing the activities of terrorists, armed bandits and other criminals across the country.
“The High Command of the Armed Forces, also reassures the general public of its commitment to securing the country for all human activities to strive.
“Members of the general public are always enjoined to continue providing timely information on the activities of criminals in their various localities to the nearest military and other security agencies for prompt action,” he said.