Troops of the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) in Nigeria’s troubled north east have killed more than 56 terrorists, intercepted logistics and rescued abducted civilians in a renewed offensive against jihadists.
The troops made up of soldiers from Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad and Niger have continued to mount offensives against the Boko Haram and Islamic State of West African Province (Iswap) terrorists who have been terrorising the area since 2009.
The insurgents have been successfully dislocated from some north eastern states of Adamawa, Yobe and part of Borno, turning the Lake Chad Basin region to a theatre of war that has claimed over 65,000 lives and caused displacement of more than 2.1 million people besides the damage to education, agriculture and social infrastructure.
The MNJTF, working side by side with the Nigerian military, have intensified efforts to deter and stifle the terrorist threats.
Weapons, vehicles seized
The troops engaged fighters of Boko Haram and Iswap while on patrol along the Kara-Diffa road on January 19, 2023, killing of more than 36 terrorists while others fled leaving behind heavy weapons, vehicles and food.
Petrol that was being transported from Maine Soroa to the Lake Chad islands, possibly to suspected Boko Haram and Iswap criminals, was also seized.
The troops also attacked the enclaves of terrorists in Kwatan Turare near Baga in Borno state, killing more than 20 fighters and repelled others while they attempted to infiltrate the communities to cause havoc.
Soldiers recovered one rocket-propelled grenade, seven bombs, two 60mm mortar bombs, 36 rounds of 7.62mm ammunition, seven Mortar chargers and two wooden canoes.
Troops had on January 15, 2023 killed unspecified number of Boko Haram and Iswap terrorists who also attempted to infiltrate Monguno in MNJTF Sector 3 in Nigeria.
A soldier was killed in the sector where abducted civilians were rescued and new motorcycles were recovered and 11 terrorists captured.
"Investigation is ongoing to ascertain the origin of the motorcycles and how they were smuggled into the Lake Chad islands,’’ a military source reported.
The Force Commander of MNJTF, Maj-Gen Abdul Khalifah Ibrahim, has enjoined the troops to continue to maintain resilience and the offensive until the criminals surrender or are defeated completely.
He said that the terrorists have been severely degraded and there is need to “finally finish them off”.
Observe humanitarian laws
He reminded the force of the obligation they have to observe international humanitarian laws and to be professional at all times.
He praised the courage and determination of the MNJTF troops and their commanders and paid tribute to the fallen hero and passed his deep condolences to the soldier’s family.
He called on the people of the Lake Chad basin region domiciled in the four countries to continue supporting MNJTF and other security forces and to always pass useful information to the forces on activities of the criminal elements to help bring this conflict to an end.