By Chimezie Godfrey
The Defence Headquarters DHQ Abuja says another 863 terrorists and their families have surrendered as troops intensified onslaught against criminal elements across the country.
The Director Defence Media Operations Maj-Gen Benard Onyeuko revealed this Thursday during the biweekly press briefing on the operational activities of the Armed Forces of Nigeria and other security agencies within the past 2 weeks.
According to him, own troops aggressively sustained their operations on the terrorists, bandits and other criminal elements by maintaining offensive engagements in all theatres of operation within the Country, which recorded appreciable results.
General Onyeuko noted that troops of Operation Hadin Kai conducted various land and air operations in different locations of the theatre with renewed vigour that recorded significant results in the last 2 weeks.
He mentioned that some of the operations were conducted at different locations in towns, villages and forests under; Konduga, Mafa, Dikwa, Gwoza, Bama, Bayo, Kukawa, Monguno, Nganzai and Damboa LGAs of Borno as well as locations in the Sambisa forest.
He added troops also recorded significant results at various locations in Adamawa and Yobe States, around the Mandara Mountain and along Damaturu – Potuskum road, respectively.
“Notably, ground troops with the support of the Air Component aggressively foiled terrorists’ attempted infiltration into Biu town in Borno State.
“During the encounter, troops neutralized scores of the terrorists and captured their gun trucks and other weapons. These operations resulted in the elimination and arrest of several terrorists, recovery of assorted arms, ammunition, livestock and other items of security concern as well as rescue of abducted civilians.
“Furthermore, troops’ operational activities have continued to drive terrorists out of their camps into surrendering with their arms and families in the North East Zone of the Country.
“Consequently, within this period under review, own troops neutralized a total of 37 terrorist elements, arrested 17 of them as well as recovered 21 assorted arms and 117 rounds of different calibres of ammunition, while a total of 4 gun trucks were captured from the terrorists. Additionally, troops rescued a total of 16 abducted civilians within the period.
“A total of 863 terrorists and their families comprising 136 adult males, 251 adult females and 476 children surrounded to own troops deployed at different locations, including; Banki, Bama, Dikwa, Gwoza and Gamboru towns in Borno State, within the period.
“The surrendered terrorists have been properly profiled and handed over to appropriate authorities for necessary actions,” he said.
Gen Onyeuko further revealed that the Air Component of Operation Hadin Kai scored devastating hits on terrorists’ stronghold at Arina Chiki village in the Lake Chad Basin in Borno State, which resulted in the neutralization of scores of the terrorist, while several others escaped with various degrees of injuries.
According to him, this feat was achieve on the 14 January 2022, when on the heels of credible intelligence, a force package of NAF platforms were dispatch to attacked the identified location which the terrorists used as venue for biweekly meetings. Consequently, the NAF platforms took out the terrorists in successful turns of airstrikes.
Gen Onyeuko further mentioned that other achievements recorded within the period under review include killing of 12 armed bandits, arrest of 57 criminals, rescue of 11 Kidnapped civilians, and recovery of 637,500 litres of illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil and 950,000 litres of stolen crude oil, among others.
These were recorded by the troops of Operation Hadarin Daji, Operation Safe Haven, Operation Whirl Stroke and Operation Delta Safe.
Gen Onyeuko therefore assured that the Armed Forces of Nigeria and other security agencies across the Country will continue to maintain their stand in the efforts to deny criminal elements freedom of actions.
He said the Military High Command appreciates the troops for their sacrifices in the various theatres of operation and commended their courage and resilience in combating the security challenges across the Country.
They equally appreciated the general public for the cooperation given to the Armed Forces of Nigeria and other security agencies in the course of their operations.
Gen Onyeuko who appreciated members of the press for their immense support, further encouraged all to continue to avail security forces with credible and timely information that will aid their proactive operational engagements in the Country.