The Nigerian Army said 19 soldiers and three civilian JTF members were on Thursday wounded in an ambush on troops at Guro Gongon village in Borno.
A statement issued in Abuja on Thursday night by Army spokesman Sani Usman said an undisclosed number of insurgents were killed in an exchange of fire with the troops.
Usman added that other soldiers were missing in action as a result of the ambush.
He said the incident occurred while the troops were returning to their defensive positions after a clearance patrol at Guro Gongon village and environs.
Usman said while the wounded had been evacuated and were responding to treatment, a search and rescue party comprising Special Forces personnel had been dispatched to the area.
Usman said though some of the missing soldiers were reported to have started returning to their defensive positions, the search party was making efforts to guide their missing colleagues back base.
Usman said the troops had in the operation at Gongon cleared terrorists hide outs and recovered items including vehicles and arms.
He said: “Today morning, troops destroyed the terrorists’ makeshift camps and recovered quite a number of weapons, equipment and foodstuff in the process.
“The recovered items include one Gun truck mounted with an Anti-Aircraft Gun, a MOWAG Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC), one Rocket Propelled Grenade Tube, one Light Machine Gun, three AK-47 rifles and motorcycles.
“However, the gallant soldiers basking on the recorded success, returning to their defensive locations, ran into an ambush by a group of Boko Haram terrorists who came to reinforce their fleeing comrades.
“The troops fought back gallantly killing several of the insurgents but 19 soldiers and three civilian JTF members were wounded in action while a few others were missing in action.”
Usman said efforts would be made to ensure that until every person involved in the operation returned to base. (NAN)