NO fewer than five suspected members of the different militant groups terrorizing the oil-rich communities of Awara and Assa in Ohaji/Egbema LGA of Imo State have been shot dead by the gallant operatives of military taskforce deployed in the area. The deceased militants met their untimely death during an encounter with the special military taskforce that stormed the communities last Saturday to quell the unending violent cult rivalry, restiveness and vandalism in the area. Nigerian Pilot gathered that men of the taskforce had stormed the troubled communities in a truck in disguise and the militants who confronted them on arrival , opened fire but were overpowered by operatives who shot five dead with many others being seriously wounded. Leader of the militants simply identified as “Banga” managed to escape but his house was raised down by the security operatives even as many of the suspected militants fled. When contacted, the Imo State Police Command Public Relation Officer, DSP Andrew Enwerem confirmed the presence of the security operatives in the communities and killing of some of the militants. He confirmed that the Police Command has always been deploying security team to the communities to quell crisis in the affected areas Our correspondent reports that the latest operation in the affected communities may not be unconnected with the ongoing search for militants in all parts of the state and Niger Delta region as directed by the Federal Government It was further learnt that the Awara and Assa communities have been under the siege by both militants and cult groups that led to the people deserting the communities to avoid falling victim.