Nigerian forces eliminate ISWAP kingpins, fighters in Damasak

Nigerian forces eliminate ISWAP kingpins, fighters in Damasak
Charles Nwoke, Maiduguri, Nigeria
April 17, 2021

Troops of Operation Lafiya Dole (OPLD) has eliminated 13 top commanders and scores of fighters of Islamic States West Africa Province (ISWAP) insurgents in Damasak, Borno State, the Nigerian Army said.

Brig.-Gen. Mohammed Yerima, the Army Public Relations Director, in a statement, revealed that such a mighty feat was actualized by well-coordinated and articulated operations of both air and land military forces.

He stated that scores of terrorists had met their waterloo in attempts to permeate Damasak and other surrounding communities in Mobbar Local Government Area Council of Borno State.

Brig.-Gen. Yerima disclosed that a senior ISWAP commander is popularly known as Bukar Fitchmeram (aka Abu Aisha) and scores of his fighters, who were on a retaliation mission at Damasak, fell to the strong fire of Nigerian forces on Thursday.

According to him, the terrorist was neutralized as they made a reprisal attack, following the killing of 12 prominent ISWAP commanders in Mobbar Local Government Area Council in a week-long air and ground operations by Nigerian military troops.

Brig.-Gen. Yerima said that the Nigerian military in well-coordinated ground bombardments and aerial strikes on different locations in the Northeast, the hoodlums, who were denied any haven or respite, desperately carried out two separate unsuccessful attacks on Gajiram and Damasak.

The Army Public Relations Director said, “The deadly air strikes conducted on Tudun Wulgo, Zari and Tumbun Alhaji, Kusuma, Sigir in Ngala and Arijallamari, in Abadam, Marte and Ngala Local Government Areas, led to the killing of top ISWAP leaders.

“The terrorist commanders that perished in the airstrikes included; Mohammad Fulloja, Ameer Mallam Bello, Ba’a kaka Tunkushe, Abu Al -Ansari, Ameer Abba Kaka, Abu Huzaifa, Ameer Modu Kwayem, while Goni Mustapha, who was the Chief Imam of the ISWAP escaped with bullet wounds.

“Troops’ artillery bombardment and airstrikes on April 6 also resulted in the elimination of two top ISWAP leaders including Abu-Rabi and Muhammed Likita as well as scores of their troops and bodyguards around the axis of Kusuma, Sigir in Ngala and Arijallamari in Abadam local government areas.

“The terrorists’ storage facilities that housed weapons used to conduct several attacks were also targeted and destroyed in the air raid by the Air Component of Operation Lafita Dole.

“On the night of Saturday, April 10, three other terrorist commanders including Ameer Umar, Abu Ubaida, and Abu Salim were ambushed and killed by troops around Wulgo / Logomani axis close to Cameroon borders while attempting to attack locals and rustle their cows.”

He went further to reveal that the destructive and devastating airstrikes and artillery bombardment on the ISWAP base had pushed the surviving terrorists to conduct desperate attacks and looting missions for food and drugs for their injured members.

He said that the military bombardments conducted on 11 April, equally neutralized scores of ISWAP/Boko Haram insurgents on five gun trucks in Damasak.

Brig.-Gen. Yerima, went ahead to explain that some of the terrorists were hit close to the perimeter fencing, while others were exterminated while trying to loot food items in a United Nations store as well as drugs and ambulance.

He added that three army officers and some civilians lost their lives while property worth millions of Naira were destroyed by fire in the town.

According to him, forces combatant morales remain high despite the nefarious activities of some local informants who have been sabotaging the operation by often giving the Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorist tip off on troops’ whereabouts, positions, movements, and plans.