Troops eliminate 121 terrorists, bandits in 2 weeks




Armed bandits

The Defence Headquarters says troops have eliminated no fewer than 121 terrorists and bandits in the last two weeks.

The Director, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. Bernard Onyeuko, made the declaration in Abuja on Thursday while briefing newsmen on on-going military operations across the country.

He said troops of “Operation Hadin Kai’’ conducted clearance operations in the fight against Boko Haram and Islamic State – West Africa Province (ISWAP) terrorists and other criminal elements in the theatres of operations.

Onyeuko said the operations led to the killing of 12 terrorists and the recovery of a large cache of arms and equipment.

Some of the arms and equipment are four AA-guns, 2,000 rounds of 12.7mm ammunition, one MOWAG Armoured Personnel Carrier and one truck mounted with 122 artillery gun.

He said Boko Haram and ISWAP members had continued to surrender to troops at different locations of the war theatre.

“A total of 174 Boko Haram terrorists and their families comprising of 43 adult males, 58 females and 73 children from villages around Bama and Dikwa Local Government Areas of Borno surrendered to our troops.

“All terrorists that have surrendered and their families have been profiled,’’ Onyeuko said.

The Defence spokesman added that troops of “Operation Hadarin Daji’’ also conducted series of artillery and air bombardments of terrorists in the northwest during the period killing six terrorists and forcing many to flee in disarray.

He said that exploitation operations led to the recovery of 574 rustled cattle, 22 motorcycles, three AK-47 rifles and 21 rounds ammunitions.

He added that other operations in Katsina, Sokoto and Zamfara during the period resulted in the neutralisation of 90 bandits and the rescue of eight civilian victims.

“Cumulatively, the operations neutralised 96 terrorists, rescued eight kidnapped victims, and recovered large cache of ammunitions.

“All rescued civilians have been handed over to the appropriate authorities for further actions,’’ he said.

Onyeuko also told newsmen that renewed intensity of operations by troops of “Operation Whirl Stroke’’ in the fight against banditry and other criminal elements resulted in the destruction of many bandits’ camps.

He said the troops eliminated notorious militia gang leader, Iortyom Wuave (aka Janta) on Feb. 24.

Wuave had been on the Wanted List of the military at Tse Mela in Katsina Ala Local Government Area of Benue.

He added that troops also raided the hideout of notorious bandits at Tse Jundo in Mbamena Council Ward in UUkum Local Government Area of Benue.

In the process, troops killed two bandits, Terdoo Kiorga (aka Apaapa) and Orkulam Mom (aka Orbutee).

Onyeuko said the duo had been on the wanted list of “Operation Whirl Stroke’’ and were known to have unleashed mayhem on Zaki Biam in Benue and its environs in the past.

Within the period under review, troops cumulatively neutralised nine bandits, recovered eight AK47 rifles, eight magazines, 208 special ammunitions and 15 cell phones.

“As part of non-kinetic operations, Force Commander of `Operation Whirl Stroke’, distributed some food, sanitary materials and sundry items to Internally Displaced Persons in Ortese, Benue and Daudu in Keana, Nasarawa State.

“Troops also conducted series of peace meetings with heads of local communities and youth leaders to workout modalities for maintaining peace in their domain,’’ Onyeuko said. (NAN)

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