Abuja - The military on Monday in Abuja said that it killed 18 suspected terrorists while troops captured more weapons and aborted attacks in the outskirts of Bama and Ngurosoye in Borno.
This is contained in a statement signed by Major-General Chris Olukolade, Director of Defence Information, in Abuja.
Olukolade, who is also the Coordinator, Joint Information Centre Counter Terrorism Campaign, said the terrorists were killed during military patrol at the weekend in the area.
He said the troops dislodged some terrorists who were about to attack some settlements and in the encounter, 16 burnt AK 47 rifles were found in the debris.
According to him, the troops also destroyed 5 pick-up vehicles, 7 Golf cars and one Hillux truck.
"A total of 75 villagers were screened and released in the course of cordon and search in the adjoining communities.
"The purported bomb attack on a market in the vicinity, as widely reported in the media, is, however, yet to be verified," he said.
Olukolade said that 16 AK47 rifles were also recovered in the course of cordon and search of communities, adding that mope up operations were ongoing on Mandara mountains and Haraza hills.
He said that troops eventually overran camps in the outskirts of Gombole, Mele, Kecheri, Dufrfada, Yuwe and others around Mandara mountains and Sambisa forests after stiff resistance.
He said many terrorists died in the encounter while a soldier died and five others wounded.
The defence spokesperson said that Multi-National Joint Task Force (MNJTF) had also stepped up patrols of the banks of Lake Chad as well as surrounding communities.
He said that this was in addition to air surveillance and patrols, designed “to smoke out the remnants of the terrorists."
"The air raids on some camps sited on Islands have also recorded successes in dislodging the terrorists located there.
"Cordon and search for the terrorists have been focused on thorough screening of the villagers in surrounding communities.
"Many terrorists have been identified and subsequently apprehended by troops in the process.''
He said that troops' morale and fighting spirit had remained noticeably high while some of the terrorists’ camps falling to the forces in the ongoing campaign, had been found deserted.
He said that food items earlier seized by terrorists from the villagers were often found stockpiled along with other items such as electronics and power generators.
Olukolade said that the troops had swiftly razed terrorists’ camps.
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