Troops of Operation Hadin Kai (OPHK) have neutralised more than 50 Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) terrorists in the recent counter offensive in Askira Uba Local Government Area of Borno.
The Director, Army Public Relations, Brig.-Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu disclosed this in a statement on Monday, in Abuja.
Nwachukwu said that the counter offensive led to the killing of top commanders of ISWAP and many of their foot soldiers.
He said that the gallant troops also unleashed massive destruction on the terrorists’ Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle and several Gun Trucks.
Nwachukwu said that troops of 115 Task Force Battalion had on Saturday, engaged in fierce encounter with ISWAP terrorists in Askira Uba.
He said the troops aggressively defended their location and followed up with a ferocious counter attack during which the Commander 28 Task Force Brigade along side three of his soldiers paid the supreme price.
According to him, while the battle raged, the gallant troops of 25 Task Force Brigade, supported by Air Component of OPHK engaged the terrorists in a hot pursuit.
“Troops made contact with the fleeing terrorists at Leho village within Askira Uba LGA and eliminated scores of terrorists and destroyed their combat equipment in the encounter that ensued.
“The equipment destroyed by troops include, an MRAP vehicle and 11 Gun Trucks.
“The troops also recovered large cache of arms and ammunition viz., Five Gun Trucks, two Anti Aircraft Guns, five AK 47 rifles, one HK Machine Gun and one HK Machine Gun links.
“Also, troops of 115 Task Force Battalion conducted a dawn exploitation towards Leho village and environs, where they discovered three corpses of the fleeing terrorists and also recovered 2,560 rounds of 7.62mm Special and 29 rounds of 7.62mm NATO ammunition abandoned by the terrorists.
“In a separate operation, troops have also recovered one AK 47 rifle and uncovered an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) during a patrol in Karawa village and Baga Fish Dam area respectively.
“The IED has been safely detonated by a team of the Explosive Ordnance Disposal unit,” he said.
Nwachukwu further disclosed that the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt.-Gen. Faruk Yahaya, had on Sunday led a team of top brass of the Nigerian Army to pay a condolence visit to the family of the late Commander 28 Task Force Brigade, Brig.-Gen. Dzarma Zirkusu and commiserated with families of the fallen heroes.
He said the COAS had also urged the good people of the North East to continue to support the ongoing counter insurgency operations, while reaffirming troops’ renewed operational readiness to aggressively confront the criminal elements.