Nigerian Army yesterday said its troops in the theatre of war killed 26 suspected Boko Haram terrorists who attempted to attack an Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs camp in Dikwa Local Government Area of Borno State.
The military, however, lost a soldier, a civilian JTF member and some IDP members during the encounter.
According to a statement by the acting Director, Army Public Relations, Colonel Sani Usman, the military-Boko Haram fresh encounter took place in the early hours of Wednesday, at the Dikwa IDPs camp that has a population of over 40,000 refugees.
The army spokesman had in an earlier statement said military troops had killed 23 Boko Haram terrorists and rescued 150 persons mostly children during a joint operations with their Camerounian counterpart, while 3 soldiers sustained injuries and a vehicle damaged as a result of an Improvised Explosive Device, IED in Talala and Kumshe axis.
Colonel Usman’s statement stated that, “Following dislodgement of Boko Haram terrorists’ camps in the border towns of Kumshe and Talala by joint operations of Nigerian and Cameroonian forces, the terrorists made a futile attempt on Dikwa early today.”
He explained that, unknown to the fleeing terrorists, the Armed Forces Special Forces in blocking positions decisively dealt with the terrorists; killing many, recovered vehicle, arms and ammunitions.
“Unfortunately, we lost a soldier and a member of the local vigilante (Civilian JTF) during the encounter, while 3 soldiers and 4 Internally Displaced Persons sustained injuries. A military vehicle was damaged by a Vehicle Borne Improvised Explosive Device, VBIED suicide bomber.
“The troops recovered 26 bodies of the Boko Haram terrorists, while others escaped with gunshot wounds, destroyed 3 VIED, 1 MBIED and 2 Gun trucks. The gallant troops recovered 1 Gun truck mounted with an Anti-Aircraft Gun, 1 Dushka Anti-Aircraft Gun, 1 Browning Anti-Aircraft Gun, 1 Rocket Propelled Grenade, RPG Tube. Others include 1 General Purpose Machine Gun (GPMG), 4 AK 47 Rifles, 3 RPG Bombs, 36 Hand Grenades, 1 Smoke Grenade and 8 AK-47 rifles magazines.
“The troops also recovered 236 rounds of 12.7mm ammunitions, 396 rounds of 7.62mm ammunitions and 101 rounds of 762mm (Special), ammunitions. The casualties have seen been evacuated while the troops have been pursuing those terrorists that escaped with gunshot wounds,” the statement added.
The army officer said it is encouraging to note that despite loss of colleague and the vigilante, the troops have maintain dominating presence in the general area and poised to continue to clear the remnants of the Boko Haram terrorists.
Colonel Usman said the joint operation which was carried out with Camerounian forces was quite successful as a number of the terrorists were killed, while some of their weapons and equipment were either destroyed or captured.
“In line with the Chief of Army Staff’s directive for troops to maintain the momentum, today, troops of 7 Division have carried out major operations against the Boko Haram terrorists’ locations in Talala and Kumshe axis.
“The joint operation between elements of 7 Division and the Cameroonian forces along Banki-Kumshe axis, led to the killing of 20 Boko Haram terrorists, destruction of 4 AK 47 rifles and capture of a gun truck mounted with an Anti-Aircraft Gun (AA Gun) and 2 AK 47 rifles, as well as a 60mm mortar and a Dane gun.
“Troops also encountered about 10 other IEDs along the route of advance which were cleared. Most of the terrorists ran in disarray towards Fatake where troops on blocking position cleared them.
“Along the Talala axis despite an IED in which 1 soldier was wounded and a damaged vehicle, the operation is progressing very well. More so as the Nigerian Air Force has been assisting with interdiction and surveillance.
“Troops at Kodo rescued 150 persons who were mainly children. In addition, a house with Boko Haram terrorists’ flag at Fatake caught fire with several ammunitions explosions in which 3 Boko Haram terrorists were killed in the house.
Usman confirmed that the 5 Brigade and 7 Multinational Joint Task Force were doing very well in their respective area of operations due to steady supply of needed logistics into the various formations and units fighting the Boko Haram terrorists.
He said the army also launched new mine clearing equipment, weapons and their ammunitions. “It is noteworthy, apart from being the first mine clearing machines in the inventory of the Nigerian Army, it is one of the best in the world,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Yusufu Buratai, has commended the troops for their impressive performance thus far.
He made the commendation shortly after a briefing by the Deputy Theatre Commander and also the Land Component Commander, Operation Lafiya Dole, Major General LEO Irabor and the General Officer Commanding, 7 Division, Brigadier General VO Ezugwu at the Theatre Command, Operation Lafiya Dole, Maiduguri.
Nigerian Pilot gathered that the Chief of Army Staff was in Maiduguri on official visit to formations and units in the North East.

READ ALSO  Somali Islamists kill govt official, bomb AU convoy