Nigerian army, Gunmen, Boko Haram terrorists

The military said yesterday that they had killed as many as 38 Boko Haram fighters during counter-insurgency operations in Borno State.

Army spokesman Colonel Muhammad Dole said troops on patrol foiled a planned attack on local residents and a military camp in Damboa, Borno State and inflicted “heavy casualties”.

“While the encounter lasted, 38 Boko Haram terrorists were killed and some fled with various degrees of injuries,” the officer said in an emailed statement, adding that three vehicles were destroyed.

One of the vehicles was found to have cylinders and improvised explosive devices. Weapons and ammunition, including machine guns, were also recovered, he said.

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One soldier was killed and two others were injured in the encounter, he said.

“Combined ground troops and Nigerian Air Force aircraft are tactically pursuing the fleeing terrorists in the ongoing operation in the general area of Damboa and surrounding villages,” Col. Dole added.

Damboa is nearly 90 kilometres southwest of Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.

Boko Haram, deemed a terrorist organisation by the United States, has been fighting a bloody insurgency in the North since 2009, attacking schools which follow a “Western” curriculum and churches as well as military and police targets.

The government last May imposed a state of emergency in Borno and two other neighbouring states, Yobe and Adamawa, in an attempt to stem the violence, which has claimed thousands of lives.

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Another statement signed yesterday by Colonel Timothy Antigha on behalf of the Director of Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Olajide Laleye, indicated that some of the arms recovered from the insurgents included Browning Machine Guns, Light Machine Guns, General Purpose Machine Guns and AK 47 rifles.

It added: “However, one soldier of the Battalion was killed in action. One of the captured vehicles; a Toyota Sienna vehicle was laden with Improvised Explosive Devices (IED).

“In the light of this continuous threat to the security of lives and property, the Nigerian Army wishes to assure all Nigerians of its continued readiness to meet and defeat threats to the peace and territorial integrity of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

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“To this effect, the general public is enjoined to continue to provide useful information that would assist the Nigerian Army in discharging its constitutional responsibilities”, the statement added.


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