March 25, 2012

Boko Haram: JTF rescues housewives, 13 children

By AbdulSalam Muhammad, Kano

Two suspected members of the Islamist group, Boko Haram, died, yesterday, when a primed vehicle exploded during an encounter with security forces  from the Joint Task Force (JTF) at their hideout in Sabo Gandu, Kano metropolis.

Military authorities confirmed that two soldiers also sustained  injuries during the combat operation that led to the rescue  of  five housewives and 13 children  between the ages of one and six. The housewives and children were  paraded before journalists.

“None of them was harmed as you can see for yourselves, but  what we have done and always ready to do is to execute our job professionally leaving little or no room for abuse or heavy handedness”.

Brigade Commander of  3  Motorized Brigade, Nigerian Army, Kano, Brigadier General Iliyasu  Garba said. Garba had earlier conducted reporters round the Boko Haram suspected hideout. According to him, the attack on the building  was  preemptive to contain the plan by the sect to launch fresh assault on the city.

“The suspects had been planning a major offensive with a car already primed with IEDs that was detonated the moment they noticed the presence of the security forces around their hideout and it shattered some of them ”, he stated.

The army chief alleged that some of the housewives and children rescued  during the operation were foreigners, adding that further investigation by the Immigration Service would confirm their identities.

He said that the JTF had recorded major victory against the insurgent in recent days in Kano, pointing out that soldiers  at  check points  intercepted weapons from cyclists within the metropolis and that investigations were  in full swing.

Items recovered during yesterday’s operation include  two AK 47, three magazines, 36b rounds of ammunition, 181 rounds of 7.2 MM, one short gun, two unexploded IEDs and two vehicles with one completely shattered during the blast.

The Director, Department of Security Service in Kano State, Mr. Akpan Bassey, also speaking, yesterday,  revealed that security forces had  been trailing the sect members for some time and successfully pinned them to the hideout before the operation.