Defence & Security

Troops nab ISWAP logistics suppliers, 119 terrorists

By Paul Michael, Defence Editor, Abuja

•    Neutralize 85 terrorists, rescue 798 civilians in Borno, Taraba, others
•    1,158 terrorists and their families surrendered
•    Recover 7,732,000 litres of crude oil, 10,821,605 of AGO
•    Gen Irabor engages stakeholders in Southern Kaduna

Troops of Operation Hadin Kai and Hadarin Daji of the Armed Forces have in the last three weeks recorded tremendous success in combating terrorists and criminal elements across the country as two logistics suppliers of the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) and 119 terrorists were arrested in Borno, Taraba, Katsina, Kaduna and Zamfara States The Trumpet gathered.

It was also gathered about 85 terrorists were killed by the troops while a total of 798 civilians held captive by the terrorists were rescued.

This was disclosed on Thursday by the Director of Defence Media Operations, Major General Benard Onyeuko in a bi-weekly briefing on the operational activities of the Forces. Gen Onyeuko gave the names of the logistics suppliers/informants as Mallam Abba Sidi Lawan and Abdurrazaq Hudu while adding that a prominent ISWAP Commander, Abubakar Dan-Buduma and scores of the terrorists were killed.

According to him, the operation “led to the destruction of terrorist enclaves and their central workshop where vehicles are fabricated for vehicle-borne Improvised Explosive Device (IED).”

He added that ISWAP “fighters on 5GTs attempted to attack Nigerian Petroleum Product Company Depot in Diffa near Nigeria/Niger border the attack was repelled and an unspecified number of terrorists were killed.

“Consequently, own troops recovered 49 AK 47 rifles, 728 rounds of 7.62mm, 4 MG’s, 1 G3 rifle, 3 60mm mortar, 1 AA gun, 1 SMG, 6 Magazines, 1 hand grenade, 1 UXO anti-tank RPG bomb, 11 dane guns, 1 gun tripod, 1 binocular, 5 bandoliers, and 8 crowbars.

“Other items recovered include; 7 motorcycles, 31 bicycles, 4 heavy-duty generators, 3 Canoes, 3 tri-cycles, 4 motorcycles, 22 sewing machines, 1 video camera, 4 grinding machines, 8 mobile phones, 4 cars, 4 trucks, 1 Toyota buffalo vehicle, 8 drums of grains, medical syringes and 43,000:00 Naira cash.”

Gen Onyeuko further disclosed that a total number of 1,158 terrorists and their families comprising 164 men, 367 women and 627 children surrendered to troops within the period under review.

He added that troops of the Operation Hadarin Daji recovered 592 rustled cattle, 45 different assorted weapons, 80 rounds of different caliber ammunition, and 50 motorcycles.

Meanwhile, troops of Operation Delta Safe operating in the creeks of Niger Delta were said to have recovered 7,732,000 litres of crude oil and 10,821,605 of AGO.

“Within the period under review, own troops discovered several illegal refining sites with 133 ovens, 194 metal tanks storages, 127 dugout pits, 5 wooden boats, 12 receivers, two ovens, two engines, two pumping machines, one oxygen cylinder, one motorcycle, one Jetta vehicle, 4,000 polythene bags of illegal refined black oil and five trucks. Cumulatively, Seven Million Seven Hundred and Thirty-Two Thousand (7,732,000) litres of crude oil and Ten Million and Eight Hundred and Twenty-One Thousand Six Hundred and five (10,821,605) litres of AGO was recovered,” he said.

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He further added that troops of Dakatar Da Barawo discovered and destroyed several illegal refinery sites, 145 ovens, 201 storage metal tanks, 9 pumping machines, one Yamaha 40HP outboard engine, 55 dugout pits, 58 drums of AGO, two wooden boats, 100 polythene bags illegally refined AGO and one tanker loaded with illegally refined AGO in Delta, Anambra, Cross River and Bayelsa States.

“Cumulatively, within the week under review a total of One Million Seven Hundred and Eighteen Thousand (1,718,000) litres of AGO, Three Million Eight Hundred (3,800,000) litres of crude oil, Three Hundred and Fifty Thousand (350,000) litres of sludge, Twenty Thousand (20,000) litres of PMS and One Hundred Thousand (100,000) litres of DPK,” he stated.

In another development, the Chief of Defence Staff, General LEO Irabor, was said to have embarked on an operational visit to Kaduna State during which he met with critical stakeholders drawn from 5 local government areas of the troubled parts of Southern Kaduna.

“He also interacted with retired military senior officers of Southern Kaduna extraction to chart ways towards bringing an end to the incessant attacks in the area. The visit has impacted positively the peace efforts in the area,” Gen Onyeuko said.

This is coming as troops of the Operation Safe Haven during patrol received a distress call on the activities of criminal elements in Heipang in Barkin Ladi Local Government Area of Plateau State.

“Troop quickly moved into swift action and on sighting own troops the criminal fled in disarray. The exploit led to the recovery of 178 rustled cows,” he said.

He added, “In another development, on 21 April 2022, the Commander of OPERATION SAFE HAVEN at its Headquarters in Jos handed over a total of 517 small arms and light weapons recovered from bandits and other criminal elements to the Coordinator North Central Zone of the National Centre for the control of Small Arms and Light Weapons.

“The Commander commended troops for their resilience and successes recorded at stamping out criminal activities and the recovery of numerous illicit weapons. He also commended the spirited citizens who gave actionable information to the troops that led to the huge success recorded.

“The breakdown of the weapons are 26 AK 47 rifles, one FN, two Barreta rifles, 3G3 rifles, six Barreta pistols, one Harris Bing pistol and one SMG. Others include 183 locally fabricated rifles, 163 dane guns, 102 locally fabricated pistols, 19 locally fabricated SMGs, six single barrel guns and pump-action guns.”

More so, Gen Onyeuko said the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) attacked the South East Security outfit EBUBE AGU at Echara/Agubia in Ikwo Local Government Area of Ebonyi in the process one of the assailants was killed and 5 others were arrested.

“In a related development troops of 82 Division arrested four, criminal elements of the Indigenous People of Biafra/Eastern Security Network and recovered some AK 47 rifles, one pistol, five magazines, 30 rounds of 7.62mm (special) and some rounds of 9mm in Abakaliki,” he added.

Troops of Operation Whirl Stroke were said to have continued aggressive fighting patrols and clearance operations across the general area in Nasarawa, Benue, Katsina and Taraba.

According to Onyeuko, “The efforts of troops of Operation Whirl Stroke to get rid of unscrupulous elements and restore peace and normalcy to the general area led to the arrest of Leggi Jobrin a notorious gun runner and kidnapper who has been terrorizing the people of Gidan Bawa village of Nasarawa Local Government Area and he is also on the wanted list of operation Whirl Stroke.

“Consequently, troops recovered five AK 47 rifles, 6 AK7 magazines, 110 rounds of 7.62mm ammunition, five mobile phones, eight motorcycles and seven cutlasses. While six bandits were arrested. All recovered items and apprehended bandits have been handed over to the appropriate authorities for further action.”

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