Kano (Nigeria) (AFP) – Boko Haram jihadists have killed 53 soldiers and farmers in three days of attacks in northeastern Nigeria, security sources said Tuesday, in a new show of force ahead of February elections in the West African country.
Despite the government’s insistence that Boko Haram is near defeat, the group has recently carried out a string of major attacks on military and civilian targets.
President Muhammadu Buhari, seeking re-election in February, faces widespread criticism over his security record as soldiers based in the northeast regularly complain of fatigue and insufficient supplies of food and arms.
The Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), a Boko Haram splinter group, killed at least 44 soldiers in attacks on three military bases at the weekend, according to security sources.
Of those, at least 43 were killed on Sunday in Metele, a remote village near the border with Niger, according to a military officer who requested anonymity.
“Our troops were completely routed and the terrorists captured the base after heavy fighting,” he told AFP, adding that the base commander and three officers were among the dead.
A search was under way for survivors or further victims in the surrounding bush, he said.
A pro-government militiaman said the jihadists arrived on around 20 trucks and army air support did not arrive until after they had “invaded the base and looted the weapons”.
The same day, jihadists also launched a pre-dawn attack on a base in the town of Gajiram, some 80 kilometres (50 miles) north of the Borno state capital, Maiduguri.
Fighting lasted several hours, local residents told AFP.
And a soldier was killed in an attack Saturday on a base in Mainok, also in Borno state, the cradle of the Boko Haram movement, security sources said.
– Villages also attacked –
ISWAP asserted responsibility for the attacks in Metele and Mainok, claiming to have killed at least 42 soldiers in addition to carting away four tanks and other vehicles, according to the SITE Intelligence monitoring group.
In addition, Monday saw the latest in a string of attacks on villages, usually carried out to pillage food and abduct civilians used as fighters or forced to marry jihadists.
The jihadists have accused farmers and loggers of passing information to the military.
Armed with guns and machetes, jihadists killed nine farmers and abducted 12 others in the Mammanti village in Borno state, locals told AFP on Tuesday.
The jihadists came on bicycles, said Usman Kaka, a farmer who escaped. “They just opened fire on us and continued to fire as we fled,” Kaka said.
Village chief Muhammad Mammanti said the assailants had hacked “three people who resisted being abducted”.
Also on Monday, seven women were snatched while working in fields near the city of Bama, according to militiamen fighting alongside army soldiers.
In an attack on Mammanti last week, jihadists stole hundreds of heads of cattle.
The surge in attacks on military targets suggests that hardliners within ISWAP have taken the upper hand after internal divisions, observers say.
More than 27,000 people have died since the start of the Boko Haram insurgency in 2009, and 1.8 million remain homeless.
Troops Foil Boko Haram Attempts To Infiltrate Dikwa Town
The troops of Operation LAFIYA DOLE have decisively routed elements of Boko Haram Terrorists and their Islamic State of West Africa Province(ISWAP) counterpart who attempted to infiltrate and attack Dikwa town in Dikwa Local Government Area of Borno State.
The terrorist groups who stormed the town in an unconfirmed number of gun trucks and motorcycles were visited with heavy bombardment and overwhelming firepower by troops of 81 Task Force Battalion with reinforcement from other formations of the Nigerian Army and aided by air support of Air Task Force Operation LAFIYA DOLE.
The terrorists attempted to invade the town to loot food items and other logistics having got wind of the recent food distribution to residents of the town by the state governor, Professor Babagana Zulum.
They came in their droves through the Marte axis but could not gain access to the town due to the combat readiness of troops who were positioned there.
The terrorists subsequently lost initiative as they were cut off completely following the recent successful recapture of Marte town by the gallant troops.
In desperation and to scare off residents from returning to their homes, they planted series of landmines on the roads which were also detected and successfully detonated by troops.
Consequently, the Army Headquarters wishes to debunk the unsubstantiated reports on social media suggesting that the terrorists attacked UN Base in BORNO, trapping 25 Aid Workers as published by some outlets.
Those false and sensational reports are clearly aimed at stirring up tension in the region and diminishing the glaring efforts and sacrifices of the Nigerian military in the fight against insurgency.
The COAS, Major General Ibrahim Attahiru, has commended the efforts of the gallant troops’ and the prompt response of the Air Task Force in providing air interdictions throughout the operation.
Army Kill 8 Boko Haram Terrorists In Yobe, Borno
The Nigerian Army says it’s troops of Operation TURA TAKAIBANGO a subsidiary Operation of Operation LAFIYA DOLE in the North East has killed 8 Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists in Yobe state and Borno states.
The Army says its troops also destroyed several terrorist’s hideouts, gun trucks and recovered cache of arms and ammunition belonging to the terrorists.
The acting Director, Defence Media Operations, Brig.-Gen. Bernard Onyeuko, in a statement on Tuesday said the troops of Operation TURA TAKAIBANGO has continued to degrade the Boko Haram/Islamic State’s West Africa Province criminals as they eliminate more Boko Haram/ Islamic State West Africa Province terrorists in their enclaves at Chindila town in Yobe State and Mayankari in Borno state respectively.
TURA TAKAIBANGO is a subsidiary of Operation Lafiya Dole, set up to clear the remnants of the Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists in the North East.
Onyeuko said the troops had on 25 January 2021 at about 1pm, the gallant troops of 233 Bn located at Babangida on an aggressive clearance patrol made contact with Boko Haram criminals at Chindila village.
According to him, after the decisive encounter, the troops neutralized 5 Boko Haram terrorists while some escaped with gunshots wounds.
“Items recovered include; 3 x AK 47 Rifles, quantity 5 x Magazines,17 Rounds of 7.62mm ammunition. The gallant troops are in pursuit of the enemies and have continued to dominate the general area” he said.
Onyeuko also disclosed that on 25 Jnauary 2021 at about 4pm troops of 151 Bn, 202 Bn and elements of Multinational Joint Task Force on fighting patrol made contact with some Boko Haram marauding criminals at Mayankari.
“In a swift and aggressive response, the troops engaged the terrorists with heavy gunfire and the process neutralized 3 Boko Haram criminals while others escaped with gunshot wounds”.
“Items recovered include: 3 x AK 47 Rifles, 1 x Solar panel and 1 x Improvised Explosive Device making equipment. The troops thereafter destroyed their hideout after the encounter and exploiting the general area in search of the escaped criminals”.
Onyeuko commended the troops for their continued dedication and determination in flushing out remnants of the terrorists from their hideouts.
He also assured the people of the determination of the military high command to finally rout the remnants of Boko Haram/ISWAP criminals from their enclaves.
Onyeuko encouraged the people to avail the troops with credible information that would help in the execution of the operation.
Operation Tura Takaibango: 402 Special Forces Records Success Against Boko Haram Criminal, Capture Arms And Ammunition In Borno State
Troops of Operation TURA TAKAIBANGO a subsidiary Operation of Operation LAFIYA DOLE in the North East continue to obliterate elements of Boko Haram/Islamic State’s West Africa Province criminals with uncommon ferocity as they overrun Abbagajiri and Dusula towns in Damboa.
Latest encounter with the marauding Boko Haram criminals according to the acting Director Defence Media Operations Brigadier General Benard Onyeuko, occurred by 0835hrs on 20 January 2021 at Abbagajiri in Damboa LGA of Borno State where the Gallant troops identified and encircled some Boko Haram criminals’ enclaves.
“The troops of 402 Special Forces Task Force Brigade led by the Commander engaged them with superior fire power resulting in high casualty on the terrorists.
“In the aftermath of the decisive encounter, 5 Boko Haram Terrorists were neutralized while few others are believed to have escaped with gunshot wounds.
“Equipment captured from the criminals include; one Pulemyot Kalashnikova Tankovyy(PKT) Gun, 3 AK 47 Rifles, 4 extra AK 47 Rifle magazines and a Vulcanizing Machine. Other items captured and destroyed includes food stuffs, some Improvised Explosive Device (IED) making materials including the criminals’ hideouts and clothings among others.
“The renewed onslaught against the remnants of Boko Haram/Islamic State’s West Africa Province criminals by the dogged troops of Operation TURA TAKAIBANGO is indicative of the end of all criminal elements within the North East.” He said.
He commended the troops of Operation TURA TAKAIBANGO for their dedication and determination in flushing out remnants of the terrorists from their hideouts.
General Onyeuko further assured the entire populace of the North East region of the Nigerian Army’s renewed vigour and determination to crush the remnants of Boko Haram/Islamic State’s West Africa Province criminals from their enclaves in this zone.
Politics6 months ago
Electricity Tariff Hike: Review Is A Painful Adjustment – President Buhari
Politics7 months ago
Party Crisis: Progressives Governors’ Forum DG Calls For Constitutional Review
Politics9 months ago
PGF Boss, Lukman Denies Media Report of Division Among APC Governors
Investigation8 months ago
NDDC Spent 1.3trn Between 2015 And 2019 – Senate Report
News2 years ago
Armed Forces Need N9bn Annually For Shoes, Boots, Says DG Defence Research
Politics2 years ago
Ignore Tinubu’s Comment, He Cannot Speak for South-West – Activist
News2 years ago
Amaechi Endorses AAC Guber Candidate in Rivers
Politics2 years ago
Emir Sanusi Plots Cancellation of Kano Rerun Election