Troops Kill Bandits During Air Operations in Kaduna – Govt

A file photo of a Nigerian air force airstrike
A file photo of a Nigerian air force airstrike


Troops of the Nigerian Military have killed several bandits during various operations in the camps of the bandits in four local government areas of Kaduna state, the state government said on Thursday.

The latest success is coming just one day after the Army deployed 300 female soldiers to the Abuja-Kaduna highway.

According to a statement by the Kaduna State Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Samuel Aruwan, air platforms of the Nigerian Air force carried out several armed missions across identified locations spanning Birnin Gwari, Giwa, Igabi, and Chikun local government areas.

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According to the operational feedback to the Kaduna State Government, areas covered were Kaduna-Birnin Gwari road, Buruku, Ungwar Yako, Udawa, Polewire, Crossing Point, Gagafada, Kugu, Kampani Doka, Gwaska, Goron Dutse, and adjoining settlements

He says that during the operations, Bandits were spotted with cattle about 9km north of Gidan Audu, and were duly neutralized, and was also the same situation in the southwest of the same location where other bandits were killed.

More bandits according to the Commissioner were similarly sighted at Gbakopai and were also neutralized, while at the foot of a high ground west of the village, more bandits with cattle were sighted and engaged.

Furthermore, armed bandits were sighted at Gagafada attempting to cross from Polewire to Kampanin Doka, and were neutralized by the fighter jet crew.

Speaking further, the statement said that bandits in a convoy of about 12 motorcycles were sighted crossing the rail line west of Gadani station, and were engaged accordingly, while troops also killed several bandits at Kwafe general area in Chikun local government.

In another mission covering Giwa LGA, a settlement was sighted at Yadi, active with bandits, and was engaged robustly with many bandits neutralized.
Other locations such as Kaduna-Abuja highway, Rijana, Polewire, Kateri, Jere, and Zuba were calm with no suspicious activities observed.

Air Strikes Decimate Boko Haram Camp In Borno – Military

File photo: The Coordinator of Defence Media Operations, John Enenche.


The military on Saturday said it has destroyed another Boko Haram terrorist’s training camp in Borno, along with a suspected ammunition depot.

The operation was carried out by the Air Task Force of Operation Lafiya Dole at Nuwar in the Bama area of Borno State on January 14, according to a statement signed by spokesman Major-General John Enenche.

Some terrorists were also neutralised, the military said.

“This was achieved . . . sequel to intelligence reports indicating that the cluster of huts and other structures in the settlement were being used to conduct combat training for the terrorists on a regular basis,” the statement said.

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“Consequently, the Air Task Force, after conducting series of confirmatory aerial surveillance missions, dispatched an appropriate force package of Nigerian Air Force (NAF) helicopter gunships for a night air raid on the location.

“The helicopters scored devastating hits in the target area which led to the neutralization of several BHTs as well as the destruction of some of their structures, including the terrorists’ armoury, where multiple mini-explosions were observed amidst the raging fire. Several other terrorists were taken out in follow-on attacks by the helicopter gunships.

“The Armed Forces of Nigeria, operating in concert with other security agencies and stakeholders, will sustain the offensive against the enemies of our Great Nation. We shall not relent until peace and normalcy are restored not only in the North East but also in every other troubled region of our beloved country.”

Terrorists Repelled

Meanwhile, troops of Operation Tura Takaibango in conjunction with the Air Task Force Operation Lafiya Dole, have destroyed seven Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists’ gun trucks, according to another military spokesman, Brigadier-General Bernard Onyeuko.

An unconfirmed number of the terrorists were also decimated, according to Onyeuko’s Saturday statement.

This combination of photos show a gun truck decimated by the Nigerian military on January 16, 2020.
This combination of photos shows a gun truck decimated by the Nigerian military on January 16, 2020.

The terrorists met their waterloo when they attempted to attack the location of the troops at the outskirts of Marte in Marte Local Government Area of Borno State, the military said.

“The gallant troops, based on reliable information about the attack, had positioned themselves in an ambush site where they tactically withdrew to and awaited the arrival of the terrorists before they opened fire which led to the fierce battle that resulted in the successes recorded as indicated above,” the statement added.

“The troops are still engaged in the pursuit of the fleeing terrorists for further exploitation. Further details of interest to members of the public will be communicated later.”

ISWAP Camp Destroyed, Many Fighters Killed In NAF Air Strikes

A photo grab of a video released by the Nigerian Air Force shows the ‘first bomb drop’ during the air strikes conducted in the northern part of Borno State on August 12, 2020.


A camp of Islamic State of West Africa Province (ISWAP) fighters in Borno State has been destroyed, the military has said.

The Coordinator of Defence Media Operations, Major General John Enenche, confirmed this in a statement on Friday.

He noted that the terrorists’ camp, located at Tongule in the Lake Chad area of Northern Borno, was knocked out by the Air Task Force of Operation Lafiya Dole.

Enenche added that the airstrikes were conducted on Wednesday following credible Human Intelligence (HUMINT) reports indicating terrorists’ activities in the village.

He revealed that the operation, which was in continuation of the air offensive against terrorist elements in the North East, resulted in the death of scores of the ISWAP fighters at the camp.


“Accordingly, following confirmatory Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) missions, which showed the presence of a sizable number of the ISWAP elements at designated locations in the settlement, the Air Task Force dispatched a force package of Nigerian Air Force (NAF) fighter jets to attack the location.

“The NAF jets took turns in engaging the location scoring devastating hits on the designated targets leading to the destruction of the structures, as well as the neutralisation of several ISWAP fighters,” the statement said.

On his part, the Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, commended the Air Task Force for their dedication and professionalism.

He also urged them to intensify the air offensive against the terrorists and all other criminal elements in the country.

Russian-Linked Air Strikes Kill 19 In Northwestern Syria

A Syrian man comforts another on the rubble of a building after a reported Russian airstrike on a popular market in the village of Balyun in Syria’s northwestern Idlib province, on December 7, 2019.


Syrian regime and Russian air strikes on Saturday killed 19 civilians, eight of them children, in the country’s last major opposition bastion, a war monitor said.

The air raids in the jihadist-run northwestern region of Idlib also wounded several others, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

Air strikes by regime ally Russia killed four civilians including a child in the village of Al-Bara in the south of the region, the Observatory said.

An AFP correspondent at the scene saw rescue workers pick through the rubble of a two-storey home whose concrete roof had collapsed.

Rescuers carried away the body of a victim wrapped in a blanket on a stretcher.

Russian raids also killed nine civilians including three children in the nearby village of Balyun, the Observatory said.

Crude barrel bombs dropped by government helicopters killed five civilians including three children in the village of Abadeeta, also in the same area.

In the southeast of the embattled region, a raid by a regime aircraft killed another child in the village of Bajghas, the Observatory said.

The Britain-based monitor, which relies on a network of sources inside Syria, says it determines the provenance of an air strike by looking at flight patterns and the aircraft and munitions involved.

The Idlib region, which is home to some three million people including many displaced by Syria’s civil war, is controlled by the country’s former Al-Qaeda affiliate.

The Damascus regime has repeatedly vowed to take back control of Idlib.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces launched a blistering military campaign against the region in April, killing around 1,000 civilians and displacing more than 400,000 people from their homes.

A ceasefire announced by Moscow has largely held since late August.

But the Observatory says deadly bombardment and skirmishes have persisted, with more than 200 civilians killed in the region since the deal.

Syria’s war has killed over 370,000 people and displaced millions from their homes since beginning in 2011 with the brutal repression of anti-Assad protests.



9 Jihadists Killed In Russian Air Strikes

File Photo: Smoke billows during reported Syrian government forces’ bombardments on the village of Sheikh Mustafa in the southern countryside of the jihadist-held Idlib province on May 27, 2019. / AFP


Nine jihadists were killed Saturday in Russian airstrikes on Syria’s northwestern province of Idlib, a monitoring group said.

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“Russian strikes this morning targeted the Hurras al-Deen group and Ansar al-Tahwid in eastern Idlib… killing nine jihadists,” said the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, adding eight others were wounded.

Four Killed As Syrian Air Strikes Hit Hospitals


Regime airstrikes Thursday on an anti-government bastion in northwest Syria killed four civilians, two of them children, and hit three hospitals already damaged in previous raids, a monitor said.

A fifth person, another child, was killed in a separate air raid by regime ally Russia also in the Idlib region, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights war monitor said.

The Idlib region is supposed to be protected from a massive regime assault by a September buffer zone deal, but the area housing three million people have come under the increased regime and Russian fire since April.

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The region is administered by Syria’s former Al-Qaeda affiliate Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, but other jihadist and opposition factions are also present.

“Regime warplanes again targeted three hospitals in the south of Idlib,” which had been hit and damaged in raids in previous weeks, the Observatory said.

There were no casualties in these raids on the village of Hass and the town of Kafr Nabl, it added.

Obeida Dandouch, who heads a rescue group in the area, said the strike in Kafr Nabl damaged a large part of what was still standing at the local hospital.

In May, Amnesty International accused the Syrian regime and Russia of launching “deliberate and systematic” assaults on hospitals in the northwest.

At least 25 hospitals and clinics have been destroyed or damaged by air strikes and shelling since the end of April, according to the United Nations.

Five rescuers were also killed in the last two weeks of June in an air strike on the Idlib region.

Thursday’s strikes killed four civilians, two of them children, in Kafr Nabl, Hass and the town of Khan Sheikhun in Idlib region, the Observatory said.

A Russian air strike near Al-Bara village killed a little girl and wounded several people, it added.

Syria’s war, which started in 2011 with the brutal repression of anti-government demonstrations, has killed more than 370,000 people and displaced millions.


Fighting Displaces 45,000 Persons In Southern Syria

Civilians flee during an airstrike by Syrian regime forces in the east of the southern Syrian province of Daraa on June 24, 2018. PHOTO: MOHAMAD ABAZEED / AFP


Air strikes and ground fighting in southern Syria have forced at least 45,000 people to flee, the United Nations said on Tuesday, the largest displacement in the area so far.

Backed by Russia, Syrian government forces have ramped up air strikes and ground attacks on rebel positions in the south, particularly its main province of Daraa.

“Our estimates are 45,000, maybe even higher,” said Linda Tom, spokeswoman for the UN humanitarian coordination office (OCHA) in Syria.

The displacements have been happening increasingly fast in recent days as violence has escalated, Tom said.

“Over the last couple of days we saw a very large number of people who fled because of the ongoing hostilities, because of the shelling and fighting in that area,” she told AFP.

The majority are fleeing from the eastern parts of Daraa province south towards the sealed border with Jordan, which has said it cannot absorb any more refugees.

“We haven’t seen massive displacement in this scale in Daraa,” Tom said.

The UN had previously warned that fighting was putting 750,000 people in rebel-held areas of the south in harm’s way.

More than five million people have fled abroad since the Syrian conflict erupted in 2011. Another six million are displaced inside the country.


Air Strikes On Syria’s Ghouta Kill 10 In One Night

FILE PHOTO: Wounded Syrians receive medical attention at a makeshift clinic following reported air strikes in the Syrian rebel enclave of Eastern Ghouta on March 5, 2018. PHOTO: Ammar SULEIMAN / AFP

Air strikes on rebel areas of Eastern Ghouta near Damascus killed at least 10 civilians overnight, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Friday.

The Britain-based monitoring group’s head, Rami Abdel Rahman, said the strikes were carried out by Russian warplanes on the Saqba area, in the south of the splintered enclave.


Syria Strikes Kill 28 Civilians In Rebel Area Near Damascus

Regime air strikes killed 28 civilians in a rebel enclave near Damascus on Monday as Syria’s seven-year-old conflict raged on several fronts with non-combatants paying a heavy price.

The region of Eastern Ghouta is home to an estimated 400,000 people living under a crippling government siege that has made food and medicine almost impossible to acquire.

The area has been designated as one of four de-escalation zones in Syria, but residents there have been facing escalating bombardment in recent weeks.
“Dozens of air strikes hit several areas in Eastern Ghouta,” said Rami Abdel Rahman, head of the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitor.

The deadliest raids on Monday hit a market in the town of Beit Sawa, killing 10 civilians including two children.

Another nine civilians, two of them children and one a local rescue worker, were killed in Arbin.

Nine more civilians died in strikes across the rest of the besieged region, and dozens more people were wounded, the Observatory said.

The barrage of bombardment came as the United Nations children’s agency warned of the dire risks to children in the Middle East’s war zones.

At least 83 children were killed in conflicts across the region in January — including 59 in Syria alone.

And four Syrian children were among at least 16 refugees who froze to death in a snowstorm as they tried to flee to neighbouring Lebanon.

Sobbing silently

In Arbin on Monday, an AFP correspondent saw the lifeless bodies of young children laid out on the floor in the local hospital.

One of the dead was a member of a volunteer rescue force in the town, and a group of his colleagues could be seen crying over him.

Outside, a man sat sobbing silently atop a pile of rubble after having lost two of his family members in the raids.

AFP correspondents reported that air strikes began at around 10:00 am (0800 GMT) on Monday, and airplanes could still be heard circling above in the afternoon.

In apparent retaliation, rockets and mortars rained down on government-controlled districts of Damascus, Syria’s state news agency SANA reported.

One woman was killed and four people were wounded in mortar fire on the Bab Touma neighbourhood and the capital’s Mariamite Cathedral, a Greek Orthodox church, a police source told the agency.

Another person was killed and nine people wounded in rocket fire on the regime-held part of Harasta district.

Syria’s war has killed more than 340,000 people and displaced millions since it began in March 2011 with the brutal repression of anti-government protests.

Chlorine accusations

Eastern Ghouta is supposed to be one of four de-escalation zones agreed last year by rebel ally Turkey and government supporters Iran and Russia.

But violence has ramped up there in recent weeks, with at least 11 civilians killed in raids on the district on Friday.

This month alone, chlorine is suspected of having been used on two occasions in munitions launched by the regime on Eastern Ghouta, causing respiratory problems among civilians.

Accusations of toxic gas use have also come from Idlib, an opposition-controlled province in the country’s northwest that also falls in a de-escalation zone.
Syrian troops have pressed a fierce offensive on Idlib for more than a month with air cover from Russian warplanes.

Nearly a dozen people were treated for breathing difficulties on Sunday after Syrian government raids on the town of Saraqeb, the Observatory said.
Mohammad Ghaleb Tannari, a doctor in a nearby town, said his hospital had treated 11 people.

“All the cases we received had symptoms consistent with inhaling the toxic gas chlorine, including exhaustion, difficulty breathing, and coughing,” he told AFP.

The United Nations has found that Syria’s government carried out chlorine gas attacks in 2014 and 2015 and also used sarin against a town in Idlib last year.

Syria’s government has vehemently denied ever using chemical weapons.

Another 16 civilians were killed across southern parts of Idlib on Sunday, the Observatory said in an updated toll.

Israeli Air Strikes, Rockets Hit Syria


The Israeli army overnight carried out air strikes and fired rockets at targets in Syria, causing damage near a “military position”, the Syrian army said in a statement on Tuesday.

The Israeli air force carried out strikes on the Qutayfeh area northeast of Damascus, hitting near the military position and causing the Syrian army to retaliate and “hit one of its planes”, the army said.

Israel also launched land-to-land missiles into Syria from the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, but the Syrian army intercepted them, it said.

Israel’s army has carried out several attacks on the Syrian army and its ally Lebanese Shiite movement Hezbollah since the start of the conflict in Syria in 2011.

Israel seized 1,200 square kilometres (460 square miles) of the Golan Heights from Syria in the Six-Day War of 1967 and later annexed it in a move never recognised by the international community.

Syria and Israel remain technically at war, and the Jewish state fought a devastating war against Hezbollah in 2006.


US Hits Taliban ‘Where It Hurts’


File photo

United States Forces have launched airstrikes on drug-making laboratories in Afghanistan as part a new joint strategy with the Afghan military to cut off funding for the Taliban, authorities said Monday.

Numerous drug labs were decimated in a series of aerial bombardments in the poppy-rich southern province of Helmand — a Taliban stronghold — on Sunday night, US and Afghan officials said.

The joint operation came days after a UN report showed opium production in Afghanistan — a key source of funding for the Taliban’s 16-year insurgency — soared 87 percent this year as the area under poppy cultivation hit a record high.

General John Nicholson, commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan, said targeting the drug labs would “hit the Taliban where it hurts” and warned more airstrikes would follow.

“The strikes that were prosecuted last night will continue,” Nicholson told a news conference in Kabul, stressing that poppy farmers would not be targeted.

“We hit the labs where they turned poppy into heroin. We hit their storage facilities where they kept their final products, where they stockpiled their money and their command and control.”

The Taliban profits from the illegal drug trade by taxing poppy farmers and traffickers across the war-torn country, pocketing an estimated $200 million a year, official data shows.

Several videos showing the airstrikes involving B-52 bombers and an F-22 fighter jet were played for reporters.

Nicholson said US Forces began identifying drug labs to hit after President Donald Trump’s strategy announcement in August made it easier for American air power to proactively target the Taliban and its sources of revenue and infrastructure.

The Taliban issued a statement denying the existence of the drug-making facilities.

The US-Afghan operation comes as around 3,000 additional American troops promised by Trump are deployed to help train and assist beleaguered Afghan security forces who have been struggling to beat back Taliban and Islamic State insurgents.

The UN Office on Drugs and Crime warned last week that the “significant levels” of opium cultivation and trafficking in Afghanistan would fuel the insurgency and boost funding for militants.

The area under poppy cultivation has expanded by 63 percent to a record 328,000 hectares (810,500 acres) this year — topping the previous record of 224,000 hectares in 2014 — with the number of poppy-growing provinces jumping to 24.

Only 10 Afghan provinces are now considered poppy free.

Nicholson said the Taliban had evolved into a “narco insurgency” fighting to protect earnings from drug trafficking, illegal mining, kidnapping and murder for hire.

“The fighting that they’re doing is to control the means of production, to control the poppy fields, to force farmers into growing poppy and then be able to process this opium into heroin in the relative safety of these areas,” he said.


Syrian War: School Children Killed In Idlib Air Strikes

syrian war, school children, air strikesActivists say more than 20 people, mostly children, have been killed in air strikes on a rebel-held village in north-western Syria.

A school complex was reportedly among several locations targeted in the village of Haas, in Idlib province.

The Syria Civil Defence, whose rescue workers are known as the White Helmets, confirmed that a complex containing three schools was targeted.

Although it was not immediately clear if the raids were carried out by Syrian government or Russian warplanes, the state media quoted a military source as saying several “terrorists” had been killed when their positions were hit.

The incident comes as the government and its ally, Russia, said they would continue a moratorium on the aerial bombardment of besieged, rebel-held eastern districts of the city of Aleppo.

Idlib is considered one of the last strongholds of the Syrian oppositions and according to BBC reports, the attack on Haas, about 75km (46 miles) south-west of Aleppo, appeared to have been intense.

The Syria Civil Defence said initial reports were of more than 20 people being killed, while the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights put the death toll at 22, including 14 children and a teacher.