- Lose 2 lives, 2 rocket propelled grenades, other deadly weapons
Nigerian troops came under heavy bombardment in Sambisa Forest by Boko Haram, yesterday morning, according to a statement issued by the Defence Headquarters.
However, according to the Nigerian Army, the insurgents were repelled by the Nigerian troops who were based inside the forest.
Army spokesman, Col. Sani Usman, said the troops comprised elements of 21 Brigade and the Armed Forces Special Forces, AFSF, on `Operation Crack Down.’
The insurgents launched the attack on the troops while they were on harbour for refitting, at about 1:45 a.m. on Saturday, Usman said adding that the troops followed up the attack with mopping up operations of the general area before advancing further into the forest.
Usman said two corpses of the attackers, two AK-47 rifles, two rocket propelled grenade, RPG, bombs, five rifle magazines, mortar bombs and belts of machine gun rounds were recovered from the terrorists.
He added that five soldiers were wounded as a result of mortar fired into the harbour area by the Boko Haram terrorists and were evacuated to the rear for treatment.
Usman also said troops operating deep inside the Sambisa forest have arrested one of the Boko Haram leaders, declared wanted by the military.
According to him, the suspect was arrested at about 1.35 p.m. on Friday by troops of 143 Battalion.
He said the suspect was moved to 28 Task Force Brigade Headquarters for further investigation.
Usman said troops of 21 Brigade have intensified clearance operations at Yerimari, while troops of 22 Task Force Brigade Garrison have also embarked on patrols along Dikwa–Mafa-Maiduguri road.
He said the same unit in conjunction with some elements of 112 Task Force Battalion, conducted a fighting patrol along Dikwa-Gulumba Gana road.
The Army spokesman said the patrol team had earlier intercepted 31 Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs, including women and children coming from Sunabaya, Gumule, Garno and Mane-Gana villages.
He said preliminary investigations revealed that one of the IDPs, Abacha Bulama, a native of Mane-Gana, was in possession of N1.9 million.
Usman said although the suspect claimed to be a businessman, his possession of such large amount of money arose suspicion and was being interrogated.
He added that troops of 192 Battalion, 26 Task Force Brigade also carried out clearance operations at Guduf Buba, Yagwa, Gamude, Kwatara Kasa and Kwatara Tsakiya villages.
Usman said a number of clearances and mop up operations were ongoing simultaneously across the theatre to rid the general area of the presence of the insurgents.
He said due to increased security, the theatre had witnessed increased humanitarian activities by various government and non-governmental agencies.