NAF Intensifies Search For Ghana/ISIS Group In Benue State

Nigerian Air Force, Bombing, BornoThe Nigerian Air Force, on Thursday launched a seven day air surveillance and bombardment operation code-named “Operation Smoke Out”.

The operation is to check the activities of wanted militia leader, Terwase Akwaza and possible existence of ISIS/Boko Haram group in Benue state, as recently announced by the Department of State Services.

The Air Officer Commanding of the Tactical Air Command, Air Vice Marshal, Nurudeen Balogun, said there are no official intelligence on the existence of ISIS/Boko Haram in Benue state, Operation Smoke Out, is targeted at all known criminal elements involved in the Zaki Biam killings and the ISIS group if it exists.

The Air Officer listed Agatu, Katsina Ala and Zaki- Biam in Benue state as well as Wukari in Taraba state as the flash points for the operation, the operations will include other security agencies, while the Benue state government tasked indigenes on intelligence sharing.

The Air Officer briefs journalist on the component of the operation said,

“We are working with other security agencies to make sure we put a stop to this menace and so some air assets including, aisle assets and gunships and some fighter airplanes will be operating in the next seven days, conducting intensive operations, both day and night to make sure that we solve the problems”.

Governor Samuel Ortom who was represented by his Special Adviser on Sports and Youth Development, Professor Jonathan Uever, expressed confidence in the military to end the Benue violence.

“The Benue state government has a lot of confidence in the operations of the military and with the briefs we have received from the Air Officer Commanding, we know that it is going to be well and the people will sleep with their eyes closed, especially in the areas they showed us that they will carry out the operations”.

The Air Officer Commanding said, although there are no official report of ISIS/Boko Haram cell in Benue, the operation is designed to root out all criminal elements.

The acting commanding officer of the 101 Air Defense Group, Mohammed Baba-Ari, in a briefing with pilots and mission commanders, listed key troubled areas like Agatu, Katsina Ala, Zaki Biam and Wukari forest in Taraba state.

“The major restive areas include Agatu, Zaki Biam, Katsina Ala and Logo local government areas among others. Also a forest stretching between Benue and Taraba states is the suspected enclave for the vandals perpetrating these acts”.

The Operation Smoke Out follows last weeks approval by the Chief of Air Staff, to commence counter terrorism operations with air power in a joint security operation with ground troops of other sister agencies.

Nigerian Air Force Repels Boko Haram Attack In Kangarwa

Nigerian Air Force, Boko Haram, KangarwaThe Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has repelled an attack by the Boko Haram terrorists on its ground troops at Kangarwa in northern Borno State.

Following the report of the attack, three fighter jets and a reconnaissance aircraft were immediately deployed for the operation.

A statement by the NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Group Captain Ayodele Famuyiwa, revealed that the troops averted the attack on Sunday.

The statement reads in part:

“While the fighter aircraft were scrambled to repel the attack, the Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) aircraft was deployed to give guidance to ground troops on the position equipment and strength of the Boko Haram Terrorists (BHTs).

“The operation which started at about 1700 hours (5pm) continued till late evening at about 1915 hours (7:15pm) before the attack was successfully repelled.

“Before repelling the attack at Kangarwa, the NAF also conducted a number of day and night operations yesterday.

“The air interdiction missions were aimed at decimating the operational capability of the insurgents.

“The operations were carried out at Kashimeri, Tumbu Gini, Chukugudu and other BHT strongholds from where the insurgents launch attack on Bama and neighbouring settlements”.

Military Battles Boko Haram Near Bauchi

Boko Haram Attack GombeNigerian troops on Sunday engaged scores of Boko Haram fighters in a fire fight near the city of Bauchi, North East Nigeria.

The AFP reports that Soldiers supported by two fighter jets intercepted the militants who were in 20 pick-up trucks at Dungulbe village, seven kilometres from the city, and engaged them in fierce fighting.

The Bauchi battle comes after militants attacked polling stations in Gombe and Yobe States on Saturday, killing at least 11 people.

A resident who fled to Bauchi said the terrorists arrived in Dungulbe village around 10:00 am and set up camp in preparation for an attack on Bauchi.

The militants were believed to have come through the town of Alkaleri. The gunmen in several vehicles attacked public buildings and security checkpoints.

Bauchi State police spokesman, Haruna Mohammed, was quoted to have said that gunmen also attacked some polling stations and destroyed ballot boxes in Bauchi on Sunday.