The Nigerian Army on Thursday confirmed the killing of two soldiers by suspected sea pirates in Rivers.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the killing were reported barely 48 hours to the National and State Assembly rerun elections scheduled for Saturday.

Capt. Elli Lazarus, the Assistant Director, Army Public Relations, 2 Brigade, Port Harcourt, confirmed the deaths to NAN in Port Harcourt.

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He said that a Major and one soldiers were killed after an exchange of gunfire with suspected sea pirates in Abonema, Akuku-Toru Local Government Area.

“At about 11 a.m. on Thursday, March 17, troops on patrol in Abonema, Akuku-Toru Local Government Area of Rivers, had a fierce encounter with a group of unknown gunmen suspected to be sea pirates.

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“Our men displayed extraordinary gallantry, but unfortunately, an officer and a soldier who sustained various degrees of injury during the encounter, lost their lives.

“We are currently in pursuit of the criminals and we will surely apprehend them,” he said.

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Lazarus, however, urged residents of the state to go about their lawful activities without fear of molestation.

He assured that the army had made necessary arrangements to ensure sustainable peace and security of lives and properties before, during and after the parliamentary elections in the state.