Army officer, 3 soldiers killed as troops battle ISWAP terrorists in Borno

Nigeria Army troops
Nigeria Army troops

By SADIQ ABUBAKAR, Maiduguri –

A senior officer and three soldiers have been killed in a fierce battle with Islamic State’s West Africa Province (ISWAP terrorists) a splinter Boko Haram group in Borno State.

A statement issued by the Army spokesperson, Brigadier-General Nwachukwu, said the encounter took place in Askira Uba Local Government Area of Borno State.

Despite the notable losses, the military said it was able to destroy some ISWAP jets and gun trucks.

“Troops of Joint Task Force, North East Operation HADIN KAI have neutralized several Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) terrorists during a recent encounter in Askira Uba Local Government Area of Borno State,” the statement said.

One of the fallen hero, Brigadier General Dzarma Zirkusu, who paid the supreme prize in defending the country against insurgency.

“In the fierce encounter which is still raging as at the time of filing this report, troops supported by the Air Component of OPHK have destroyed five A-Jet, two A-29, two Dragon combat vehicles, and nine Gun Trucks.

The three fallen soldiers

“Sadly, a gallant senior officer Brigadier General Dzarma Zirkusu and three soldiers paid the supreme sacrifice in a very rare display of gallantry as they provided reinforcement in a counteroffensive against the terrorists, and successfully defended the location.

“The family of the senior officer and soldiers have been contacted.

“The Chief of Army Staff Lt Gen Faruk Yahaya deeply commiserates with the families and relations of the fallen heroes.

“He has also directed that the troops continue in the ferocious counteroffensive and hot pursuit to eliminate the remnant of the fleeing terrorists.”

Zulum lauds military for resilience; empathizes over loss 

Borno Governor, Professor Babagana Umara Zulum has commended the Nigerian military for putting up a strong resilience in a battle with fighters from the Islamic State of West Africa Province, who launched attacks on a military base in Askira/Uba Local Government Area of southern Borno State, on Saturday morning.

Governor Zulum, in a statement by his spokesman, Malam Isa Gusau, paid tribute to troops at the base as well as troops from neighboring commands, who mobilised to provide reinforcement before they were ambushed. 

Governor Zulum addressing senior military officers

Governor Zulum, while commiserating with the military over the loss of some military officers and personnel, thanked the fallen heroes for what he called “their supreme sacrifices to the Nigerian Nation”, declaring that “the people of Borno will remain forever grateful to them and all fallen heroes, and will remain fully supported of gallant troops currently operating in front lines”. 

Zulum, amid the loss of some officers and personnel, said the military was able to mount heavy resistance and recorded gains which the state is proud of.

The Governor commiserated with affected residents for the trauma caused by the attack and shared the pains of anyone who may have turned victim directly and otherwise. 

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