A series of raids launched by the Joint Task Force (JTF), code named Operation Restore Order (ORO) in suspected camps of the Boko Haram sect, has claimed 17 terrorists and a soldier.
The task force, which confirmed the casualty figure yesterday, said the victims died during gun battles in two special operations supported by the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) helicopter gunship.
In a statement issued yesterday by the JTF spokesman, Lt-Col. Sagir Musa, he said the raids were launched to dislodge Boko Haram terrorists' camps in Sambisa Game Reserve in Bama Local Government Area and Farin-Ruwa forest in South-West/East of Demboa Local Government of Borno State on Wednesday and Thursday.
Musa said the camps were properly sighted and fortified and had training facilities; armoury, accommodation, drugs store/medical, kitchen, vehicle holding area, latrine and water points (river).
According to him, the camps were used to conduct training and carry out recent attacks, killings and bombings in Maiduguri, Musari, Konduga, Biu, Bama, and Demboa communities.
Musa said, "Efforts by JTF troops to destroy the camps led to fierce exchange of fire that resulted in the death of 17 Boko Haram terrorists with one JTF personnel killed. The camps were destroyed and are being monitored. The following items were recovered: 6 Ak 47 rifles, 2 G3 rifles, 3 pistols, 1 rocket propelled grenade bomb (RPG), 1 RPG tube, 20 RPG chargers, 2 double barrel rifles."
"Others are 2,543 assorted ammunition, 33 assorted empty magazines, 3 laptops computers,10 assorted Motorola walkie talkies, 20 telephone handsets, 40 assorted primed IED canisters, 3 bags of rice and 2 bags of beans, 2 jerry cans of palm oil, 1 bag of salt, 1 generating set, and light green uniforms (sown and unsown)."
The JTF spokesman reiterated the need for local communities to give credible and timely information to the task force/ security agencies. He urged members of the public to pass any credible information to the JTF through the hot lines, which he gave as 080-64174066, O81-54429346.