ABUJA: THE military said it had cleared and taken over Balmo forest from terrorists in an operation that lasted throughout the weekend.
According to a statement, prior to the operation, Balmo forest, stretching from Bauchi through Jigawa States, with links to the fringes of Sambisa forest, was used by terrorists as bases and hideouts for launching attacks.
“Terrorists and armed gangs operating in the forests were completely rooted out while some were captured during the operation,” the military stated.
Among those captured were two foreigners who are suspected to be mercenaries.
Several weapons and equipment including power generating sets, communication equipment, vehicles, motorcycles, foodstuff and kitchen utensils were confiscated, the statement said.
In another development, more than 40 terrorists have died in Kerenoa and adjoining communities, following an encounter with troops who repelled their attack on the communities.
Armed with improvised explosive devices and other high calibre weapons, a large number of terrorists had carried out a pre-dawn attack on the communities but met with stiff resistance of the troops.
During the operation, several of them were captured as well as weapons and ammunitions of various calibre.
Meanwhile, troops on routine patrol around Banki and Miyanti in Borno State during the weekend fought through an ambush laid by terrorists resulting in casualties on both sides.
Altogether, a total of six soldiers were lost in the various encounters with terrorists during the weekend while those wounded are receiving treatment.
SOURCE: CAJ NEWS AGENCY