Aftermath of increased intelligence gathering abilities, induction of new offensive military hardware as well as the successful retrofitting of air fighting assets, the Armed Forces of Nigeria neutralized 343 Boko Haram and ISWAP terrorists in the North East theatre of Operation while another 153 armed bandits were vanquished in the North West and North Central parts of the country between 18th March to 5 May 2020, the Defence Headquarters said on Wednesday.
Also, a total of 19 Boko Haram and ISWAP Amir’s or Commanders were killed in several ground and air offensives against the terrorists camps, settlements and hideouts.
Major General John Enenche, Coordinator, Defence Media Operations who made the disclosure in Abuja, also stated that 7 kidnap victims were rescued by troops of Operation Whirl Stroke in the Middle Belt area while 7 bandits were killed during confrontations with troops.
Enenche further stated that troops of Operation Hadarin Daji fighting against kidnapping and cattle rustling among others, successfully rescued 17 kidnapped persons.
In the Southern parts of the country, armed forces operatives rescued 29 local and foreign hostages, detected 61 illegal refineries scatterred across the Niger Delta and parts of Ogun and Lagos States while several illegal holding facilities were immobiilized.
Giving the breakdown of the operations at a briefing, the Coordinator said, “As you are aware the Armed Forces of Nigeria is conducting major operations across the country.
“Consequently, regular update of our efforts and progress need to be disseminated to the general public.
“For the benefit of doubt, it is a joint effort of the Nigerian Army, Nigerian Navy, Nigerian Air Force and other security agencies of our Country.
“I am to state that these operations have considerably degraded the common enemies of Nigeria and reduced economic sabotage in our Exclusive Economic Zone.
“The update will cover our operational activities from 18 March to 5 May 2020.
“Withinn the period under review, troops of Operation Lafiya Dole put in a high professional effort with glaring success.
“Some villages that were under attack during the period were rescued by our gallant troops and normalcy returned to the affected areas.
” A number of Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance missions were conducted, which revealed criminal hideouts and their activities.
“Consequently, a number of air interdictions were conducted, which led to the destruction of several BHT logistics facilities and compounds housing some of their leaders including Abu Usamah and a number of their fighters who were eliminated.
“Similarly, a total of 343 BHT/ISWAP fighters were killed and several others suffered various degrees of gunshot wounds with narrow chances of survival.
“This is in addition to several others, including their key leaders, killed by air bombardments.
“Furthermore, most of the Boko Haram’s logistics installations and networks have been destroyed, while 16 of their informants and logistics suppliers were arrested.
“At the call of this duty, some of our troops paid the supreme prize and others were wounded in action.
“Following closely, troops of Operation Hadarin Daji conducted various clearance operations during the period under review.
“The combined effort of the Land and Air Components as well as other security operatives of the Operation provided security for lives and properties.
“Several bandits locations and hideouts were cleared with Close Air Support provided for ground troops.
“In all, a total of 17 kidnapped victims were rescued and united with their families and 146 bandits were neutralized in Katsina and Zamfara States.
“Within the same period, troops of Operation Hadarin Daji recovered several arms and ammunition among other equipment.
“Our agile troops also rescued 922 Rustled Cattles and 446 sheep. However, 4 soldiers paid the supreme prize.
“Equally, troops of Operation Whirl Punch during the period under review, clamped down on Armed Militia and other bandits in Benue and Taraba States.
“Within the period, troops rescued 7 kidnapped victims and recovered large caches of ammunition and other items.
‘A total of 7 bandits were killed by troops from contacts made at Toto Nasarawa State and Anku Mbagen in Atera-Jange Torov Council Ward of Ukum Local Government Area of Benue State.
“Non of our Troops was wounded or killed in action.
“Along the Southern Regions, troops of the Armed Forces of Nigeria operating within the Maritime environment covering Operations Awatse and Delta Safe recorded tremendous successes in their operations.
“Cumulatively, a total of Sixty One (61) illegal refining sites were discovered during Anti-Crude Oil/Anti-Illegal Bunkering Operations in the Niger delta Region.
“In all, a total of Four thousand Four Hundred and Sixty-Five barrels (4,464.8) and One Million, Seven Hundred and Eighty-One (1,781,000) Litres of Crude Oil were recovered.
“Also recovered were One Million, Seven Hundred and Fifty-Six Thousand, Nine Hundred (1,756,900) Litres of AGO; One Hundred and Sixteen Thousand, Five Hundred (116,000) Litres of DPK; and Eleven Thousand, Seven Hundred and Fifty (11,750) Litres of PMS.
“During the Swamp Boogie operations, several refining ovens, receivers, surface metal storage tanks/drums, coolers and dugout pits were deactivated and immobilized.
“Fishing Trawlers were also arrested and handed over to NIMASA.
“In all, 15 hostages were rescued, a barge and some weapons were recovered and 3 pipeline vandals were also arrested.
“Also, within the period, the Nigerian Navy rescued 3 Beninoise whose fishing trawler caught fire at Lagos anchorage.
‘In addition, the Nigerian Navy responded to a distress call by Beninoise Navy for assistance, when 11 crew men onboard a Portuguese flagged container ship, MV Tommi Ritscher in Benin territorial waters came under attack by pirates.
“Among those rescued were Ukrainians, Bulgarians and Filipinos.
“The Nigerian Navy received commendation from the Benin Chief of the Naval Staff, Captain Albert Ezien Badou.
“Additionally, Eight Hundred and Ninety-Four (894) bags 50kg of parboiled smuggled foreign rice were impounded by the Nigerian Navy at Agbami platform in Akwa-Ibom State.
“Furthermore, human and technical intelligences confirmed that between January and March 2020, 19 BHT/ISWAP leaders were killed due to our ground and air offensives against their settlements and hideouts.
Continuing Enenche said, “From our operations within the period reviewed, it is obvious that the Armed Forces of Nigeria is winning the war against the enemies of our great country.
“Consequently, the Armed Forces of Nigeria will remain resolute and highly committed to end the insurgency in the country. It will sustain the offensive and will not relent until peace is restored to every troubled region of our beloved country.
“The general public is also assured of the commitment of the Armed Forces of Nigeria to protect the economic assets of Nigeria.
‘The High Command of the Nigerian Military wishes to thank the general public for their support and further solicit their cooperation towards providing credible and timely information that will facilitate proactive engagements in our operations.”
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