Military Airstrikes Kill Over 80 Terrorists In Katsina, As 35 Women, Children Rescued At Lake Chad 

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The Nigerian Air Force (NAF), on Monday, said airstrikes by the Air Component of Operation Hadarin Daji have killed more than 80 terrorists hibernating at a hideout location at Gidan Kare Village of Ruwan Godiya Ward in Faskare Local Government Area (LGA) of Katsina State.

The NAF, also said that the air strikes became necessary following intelligence that terrorists numbering over 100 were reported to be burning houses at a settlement about 5 kms away from Gidan Kare Village, stressing that overhead the village at about 8.30pm, several houses were observed to be on fire with the entire village in pandemonium.

A statement by Director of Public Relations and Information, Nigerian Air Force, AVM Edward Gabkwet, revealed that 45 motorcycles, belonging to the terrorists were also burnt during the airstrikes. 

This is as troops of Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF), deployed to Operation Lake Sanity 2, under the Task Force Wulgo, successfully rescued 34 women and children from the clutches of Boko Haram terrorists and killed one terrorist during clearance operations conducted in the Mazuri, Itsari, Mudu, and Maleri villages on fringes of Southern Lake Chad in Nigeria.

The MNJTF also revealed that no fewer than three fighters from the Islamic State’s West Africa Province (ISWAP) based in the Jabilaram camp, a secluded islet on Lake Chad, surrendered to the vigilant troops of Task Force Wulgo.

AVM Gabkwet said: “Airstrikes by the Air Component of Operation Hadarin Daji have continued to record the expected outcome as several terrorists have been eliminated with their motorcycles destroyed. In one of such strikes carried out on the night of 15 June 2024, over 80 terrorists hibernating at a hideout location at Gidan Kare Village of Ruwan Godiya Ward in Faskare Local Government Area (LGA) of Katsina State were confirmed eliminated and 45 motorcycles burnt. The strikes became necessary following intelligence that terrorists numbering over 100 were reported burning houses at a settlement about 5 kms away from Gidan Kare Village. Overhead the Village at about 8.30pm, several houses were observed to be on fire with the entire Village in pandemonium. Moments later, 12 motor cycles were seen departing the Village and trailed along a footpath out of the village to a location near Gidan Kare Village and Kuka Shidda Camp, where they joined up with a large number of their cohorts. Other terrorists were also observed arriving the location from different directions, an indication that the location was a massing up point with the terrorists likely planning to further attack nearby villages.

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“Having been presented such a rare opportunity, authorization was sought, obtained and the location was immediately struck at exactly 9:40pm, with over 80 terrorists confirmed eliminated and about 45 motorcycles burnt down, while few surviving terrorists were observed fleeing or limping off. Further intelligence received after the strike also revealed  that the terrorists were closely linked with notorious terrorists kingpin Yusuf Yellow and his close associate Rabe Imani. These strikes, along with others before now, have no doubt disrupted terrorists activities in the area”. 

NAF Spokesperson, Gabkwet, further said that the Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal Hasan Abubakar, also praised the efforts of the Air Component as well as other security agencies in diminishing the capabilities of terrorist elements in the Northwest. 

He said that the CAS made this commendations when he fête the Air Component of Operation Hadarin Daji at 213 Forward Operating Base, Katsina. 

Abubakar said: “As we continue the fight against insurgency and banditry bedeviling our dear nation, I want to commend and appreciate your resoluteness and gallantry.” 

He also said the successes by the Air Component Operation HADARIN DAJI in synergy with other security agencies have continued to contribute to security within the region. 

He urged the troops not to relent in their efforts and dedication to the fight against terrorism and all forms of criminality in Nigeria. 

Also, troops of Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF), deployed to Operation Lake Sanity 2, under the Task Force Wulgo, successfully rescued 34 women and children from the clutches of Boko Haram terrorists and killed one terrorist during clearance operations conducted in the Mazuri, Itsari, Mudu, and Maleri villages on fringes of southern Lake Chad in Nigeria.

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A statement by Chief Military Public Information Officer, MNJTF Ndjamena – Chad, Lt. Col. Abubakar Abdullahi, disclosed that three fighters from the Islamic State’s West Africa Province (ISWAP), based in the Jabilaram camp, a secluded islet on Lake Chad, surrendered to the vigilant troops of Task Force Wulgo.

He said: “In a series of Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) operations targeting terrorist activities, the troops of Operation Lake Sanity 2, under the Task Force Wulgo, have successfully rescued 34 women and children from the clutches of Boko Haram terrorists and neutralized one terrorist during clearance operations conducted in the Mazuri, Itsari, Mudu, and Maleri villages on fringes of southern Lake Chad in Nigeria on 15 June 2024. Relatedly on 17 June 2024, 3 fighters from the Islamic State’s West Africa Province (ISWAP) based in the Jabilaram camp, a secluded islet on Lake Chad, surrendered to the vigilant troops of Task Force Wulgo. The fighters, identified as Babakura Abubakar (20 years old), Abacha Kyari (28 years old), and Mohammad Adam (29 years old), are currently undergoing interrogation for further action.

“Moreover, in our continued air assault operations aimed at dismantling terrorist operations across the Lake Chad area, an air interdiction mission was conducted on 9 June 2024 at Kollaram. This operation destroyed 3 suicide vehicle-borne IEDs poised for a major terrorist attack. This precise strike exemplifies the efficacy and capabilities of Troops Contributing Countries air force units in neutralizing high-value terrorist targets and mitigating potential threats. The combined efforts of ground and air operations are significantly degrading the operational strength and morale of terrorist factions in the region. The MNJTF remain resolute in the mission to eradicate terrorism, ensure the safety of civilians, and foster a secure and peaceful environment conducive to sustaining long-term stability”.

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The Force Commander Maj Gen Ibrahim Sallau Ali commend the bravery of the troops involved in these operations and reiterate the commitment of MNJTF to restoring normalcy and peace through continued vigilance and proactive engagements.

Ikechukwu Aleke in Abuja 

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