Nigerian Army soldiers stand at a base in Baga on August 2, 2019. - Intense fighting between a regional force and the Islamic State group in West Africa (ISWAP) has resulted in dozens of deaths, including at least 25 soldiers and more than 40 jihadists, in northeastern Nigeria. ISWAP broke away from Boko Haram in 2016 in part due to its rejection of indiscriminate attacks on civilians. Last year the group witnessed a reported takeover by more hardline fighters who sidelined its leader and executed his deputy. The IS-affiliate has since July 2018 ratcheted up a campaign of attacks against military targets. (Photo by AUDU MARTE / AFP) (Photo credit should read AUDU MARTE/AFP/Getty Images)

The Defence Headquarters says troops have eliminated more than 94 terrorists and bandits in various operations in North West and North Central in the last two weeks. The Director, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. Musa Danmadami, made this known on Thursday in Abuja at the bi-weekly news briefing on the operations of the armed forces. In the North West, Danmadami said the land and air components of Operation Hadarin Daji, sustained its operations against terrorists and bandits with commendable results during the period. He said that two notorious bandits, Kabiru Mania and Abubakar, surrendered to troops alongside some of their foot soldiers at Shinkafi Local Government Area of Zamfara during the period. According to him, the surrendered bandits were responsible for series of kidnapping and robbery incidents as well as terrorist activities in Zamfara and part of Katsina State in the past. He said that four AK47 rifles, two hand grenades, 19 rounds of 7.62mm NATO belted, 61 rounds of 7.62mm special, 13 links of 7.62mm NATO, 10 rounds of 5.86mm ammunition, four bandolier, three canisters, eight magazines, among other items were received from them. The defence spokesman said the troops also raided the camp of a notorious bandits’ leader at Gando forest in Bukkuyum Local Government Area of Zamfara on Oct. 18 and recovered rustled livestockDanmadami added that troops also neutralised 10 terrorists and arrested seven suspected terrorists collaborators in other operations during the period, while 32 civilians were rescued.
According to him, an air interdiction operation was carried out on terrorists enclave, Maudi Maudi, at Tsora hill in Safana Local Government Area of Katsina state on Oct. 11. “Feedback revealed that over 14 terrorists were neutralised in the air bombardment while other survived the strike with injuries.” The defence spokesman added that another air bombardment carried out on Oct. 14, neutralised over 30 terrorists as well as destroyed their armoury.He said that the air attack followed intelligence report of bandits plan to converge at the residence of a notorious bandits’ leader Lawali Gudau, aka Dogo Damina, for a ceremony at Koli village in Maru Local Government Area of Zamfara. “Similarly, between Oct. 13 and Oct. 17, troops of Operation Whirl Punch neutralised two terrorists at Giwa and Kajuru Local Government Areas of Kaduna state while two AK47 rifles were recovered with 10 rounds of 7.62mm special. “Equally, the air component of Operation Whirl Punch carried out air interdiction operation at Yadi in Giwa Local Government Area of Kaduna state on Oct. 8. “The air strikes led to the neutralisation of a notorious terrorist kingpin known as Ali Dogo (AKA Yellow) alongside 30 of his fighters while they were having a meeting in a building,” he said.
In North Central, Danmadami said the troops of Operation Safe Haven neutralised seven criminals, arrested 40 suspects and rescued 28 civilians in different operations in Plateau and Kaduna states. He said the troops of Operation Whirl Stroke, had during the weeks in focus, arrested five terrorists, neutralised one, rescued two civilians and recovered one AK 47 rifle.

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