Kingsley Nwezeh in Abuja
The Nigerian Army yesterday said it killed three terrorists and rescued 93 children and women in two separate operations in Borno State.
Troops of the 112 Task Force Battalion and 22 Brigade killed three terrorists holding the women and children as farm slaves in Kobe and Boboshe villages in the state.
The army said 42 women and 51 children were set free during the operation. Army regimental medical officers in collaboration with the Nigerian Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) meanwhile, administered polio vaccine on 24 of the rescued children.
A statement by the army said troops also discovered newly established camps at Dubula village with some bicycles and motorcycle tracks, adding that the camp was destroyed and one of the terrorists was neutralised while trying to escape.
Similarly, the army, in conjunction with Civilian Joint Task Force, vigilante and hunters group, conducted an offensive clearance operation to Tafana 1 and Tafana 2 villages.
The troops came in contact with some terrorists who fled their camps on sighting the approaching troops in mines resistance anti-patrol vehicles.
It was learnt that the troops also neutralised the fleeing terrorists, adding that during the operation, two men, 29 women and 25 children were rescued.
Items recovered were two boxes filled with Qurans, two terrorists’ flags, five bicycles, five phone SIM cards of different networks and assorted clothing materials.
According to the statement, “In all the operations and victims so far rescued, it was observed that with the coming of the rainy season, farmers are preparing for the farming season, while the terrorists are also using women and children as farm slaves (labourers) in their farmlands to meet up with their daily feeding challenges due to food drought in the forest sustained by the ferocious operations of the Nigerian troops.”
The statement, which was signed by the Army Spokesman, Col Sagir Musa, said: “In the circumstance, troops have been directed by the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant General Tukur Yusufu Buratai, to raise their patriotism and continue to dominate the battle space with aggressive decisive clearance operations from all flanks to ensure the looming defeat of the terrorists of whatever shades in North-east zone.”
It said the acting General Officer Commanding 7 Division of the Nigerian Army and Commander Sector 1 Operation Lafiya Dole, Brigadier General Abdulmalik Bulama Biu, commended the troops of the division for the latest operation.