The Nigerian Army says it has recorded another success in the ongoing onslaught against Boko Haram insurgents in Borno State, north-east Nigeria.
A statement from the Army Operations Media Coordinator, Colonel Aminu Iliyasu, on Tuesday disclosed that the feat was made by troops of 153 Task Force Battalion deployed at New Marte.
Colonel Iliyasu explained that the soldiers had embarked on fighting patrol to Dikwa to hunt and destroy remnants of Boko Haram criminals in the area in the early hours of Monday.
Incidentally, the troops were said to have encountered an ambush staged against them by the insurgents along the patrol route at Ala Village, some 7km away from New Marte.
According to the media coordinator, the ambush was reinforced with a crudely prepared Improvised Explosive Device planted against the troops.
He said rather than getting discouraged by the sudden attack on them, the troops turned around the initial setback and dealt a devastating blow on their attackers.
“Having so clearly asserted their superiority in the ensuing firefight, the criminal insurgents were forced to flee in disarray.
“The gallant troops then embarked on a relentless pursuit of the scampering insurgents who abandoned some of their fighting equipment in utter confusion,” Colonel Iliyasu.
He noted that the operation was conducted barely two weeks after some Boko Haram fighters suffered a tactical boomerang when a sizeable number of them were killed and many others injured as they mistakenly stepped on the same improvised explosive device that they had earlier planted against soldiers.
The army media coordinator revealed that at the end of the pursuit and exploitation, two gun trucks, two anti-aircraft guns, and 2,080 rounds of 7.62mm NATO ammunition were recovered by troops.
Other items recovered are 26 rounds of 12.7 mm armor-piercing incendiary ammunition, three AK 47 rifles, six rounds of 12.7 mm (belted), one AOJOE motorcycle, as well as some clothes, foodstuff, and mechanical tools belonging to the insurgents.
Colonel Iliyasu said most of the insurgents were believed to have escaped with varying degrees of gunshot wounds while troops have continued to dominate the area with patrols.
In his reaction, the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, commended the troops for their gallantry, saying the army would accomplish its constitutional mandate professionally and responsively for a secured Nigeria.
He also thanked all well-meaning Nigerians for their support, goodwill, and understanding towards personnel of the force as they tackle the security challenges confronting the nation.
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