By Solomon Odeniyi
Operatives of the Nigerian Army in collaboration with men of the Nigeria Police Force have killed six Indigenous People of Biafra combatants in Enugu and Abia states.
The IPOB fighters who were planning to enforce their sit-at-home order were said to have engaged the security operatives in a fierce gun battle during a clearance operation on Monday morning.
A statement by the Director, of Army Public Relations, Brig. Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, said several hideouts of the fighters were destroyed during the operations.
The statement read, “Joint troops of 82 Division Nigerian Army and the Nigerian Police have neutralized three combatants of the Indigenous People of Biafra and its armed affiliate, Eastern Security Network in a fierce encounter that ensued during a clearance operation in the early hours of Monday 18 September 2023 at Igboro Forest, between Arochukwu and Ohafia Local Government Areas of Abia state.
“On winning the fight, the troops wasted no time destroying several hideout camps used by members of the groups to perpetrate heinous crimes.”
Onyema added that the destroyed camps were used for training and planning of attacks.
“The camps were uncovered, after several weeks of credible surveillance revealed that IPOB/ESN was using the forest as a combat training ground for their members and as a base for planning and launching attacks on targeted civilians, security operatives, and government facilities in the state, ” the statement added.
He said weapons and military uniforms among others were recovered from the fighters.
Onyema said, “On further exploiting the camp, the gallant troops recovered several weapons and ammunition, amongst others. The Items recovered include One improvised 16 Multi Barrel Rocket Launcher Gun mounted on a vehicle, One improvised 12 MBRL Gun, One improvised 6 MBRL Gun, One AK 47 Rifle, One Dane Gun, 6 locally made Rocket Launchers, four Improvised Explosive Devices, five Fragmental Jackets, One Baofeng Radio, Military Camouflage Uniforms and several assorted charms. ”
In Enugu, Onyema also troops after receiving intelligence foiled an attempt by IPOB fighters to enforce a sit-at-home order.
“In a similar development that also took place in the early hours of today, 18 September 2023, the same troops of 82 Division NA in synergy with the Nigerian Police Force, acting on credible intelligence busted IPOB/ESN hideout at Ezioha Mgbowo in Awgu Local Government Area of Enugu state.
The armed fighters were perfecting plans to enforce the illegal sit-at-home order in the area when the vigilant troops swooped on them.
“The armed fighters, who opened fire on sighting troops approaching their camp were however defeated in the firefight that followed, as the troops responded with overwhelming firepower, neutralizing three of the fighters, while others fled in disarray. The troops recovered three Pump Action Guns and 10 Machetes from the fleeing fighters”, the statement added.