By Kingsley Omonobi
Abuja – Several months after the federal government declared it has defeated Boko Haram, Nigerian military at the weekend rescued over 5, 000 hostages held captive by the terrorists’ group while ten terrorists were killed in several clearance operation in the North East.
One Civilian JTF member was killed, a soldier, policeman and another Civilian JTF member wounded during the encounters while arms, ammunition and logistics equipment in large quantities were recovered from the terrorists.
Confirming the rescue of the hostages and clearance operations in a statement, Col Sani Usman, Acting Director of Army Public Relations said, “Troops of 21 Brigade and Civilian JTF weekend conducted a fighting patrol to Zangebe, Maiwa, Algaiti and Mainari villages in which they killed 6 Boko Haram terrorists and wounded several others.
“The troops also liberated over 5,000 persons held hostages by Boko Haram terrorists and recovered 5 motorcycles and similar number of bicycles.
“Similarly, troops of 7 Division Garrison Rapid Deployment Force (RDF) II, in conjunction with some of elements of Mobile Police Force and Civilian JTF today also conducted Boko Haram terrorists clearance operations at Masu Yiwa, Ladin Buta, Bazaka, Kesa Gala, Tabla, Fahinde, Shirori, Gizina, Maska Aribe, Maska and Maska Lawanti villages, all in Mafa Local Government Area of Borno State.
“During the clearance operations, the troops encountered Boko Haram terrorists at Maska Lawanti in which they killed 2 terrorists and recovered 2 motorcycles.
“Unfortunately, we lost 1 Civilian JTF, while a soldier and 1 Mobile Policeman were wounded in action. The body of the heroic Civilian JTF and the wounded soldier and his police counterpart has since been evacuated to Maiduguri.
“While we commiserate with the families of the departed Civilian JTF, we wish to state that the wounded are in stable condition and responding to treatment.
“In a related development, troops of 192 Battalion, 26 Task Force Brigade and some vigilantes also embarked on fighting patrol along Kusarha-Zalidava general area today (Saturday).
“The patrol team encountered some elements of Boko Haram around Zalidava-Weige villages in which they killed 2 Boko Haram terrorists and recovered 1 General Purpose Machine Gun (GPMG) with registration number FN 132125, a belt of 7.62mm (NATO) ammunition containing 42 rounds. Sadly, one of the vigilantes sustained an injury on his eye. However, he is getting better.”