The Nigerian Army said it rescued some civilians from Boko Haram captivity and recovered weapons from the insurgents during an attack in Gubio, Borno State, this week.

In a statement yesterday in Abuja, Colonel Aminu Iliyasu, army operations media coordinator, said the Sector 3 was supported by the Air Task Force of the Operation Lafiya Dole to successfully repel the attack, which occurred between Sunday and Tuesday.

According to him, two insurgents were neutralised, while one gun truck, two AK-47 rifles and one anti-aircraft gun were recovered.

He said: “Additionally, 51 civilians hitherto held hostage by the criminals were rescued during the encounter.

“The troops continue to dominate the area with fighting/clearing patrols, ambush, raids as well as cordon and search operations.”

Iliyasu also said the army arrested a pickup truck conveying three women, 15 men, and three rustled cows during a clearance operation at Mada in Konduga Local Government Area of Borno State.

Related News

He said the claim by the suspects that they were of the Shuwa extraction was refuted by the locals in the area, adding that none of the suspects could speak any of the local dialects.

Iliyasu said preliminary investigation revealed that one of the suspects and a non-governmental organisation operating in the state had been communicating at various times.

He added that the investigation further revealed that the suspect was on WhatsApp chat platform with the NGO. The army’s claim comes as the Nigerian military launched a crackdown on some non-governmental organisations in the North-East, accusing them of aiding the insurgents.

Two weeks ago, the army announced a blacklist of Action Against Hunger, an international NGO, saying it had “credible intelligence” that the NGO supplies food and medication to Boko Haram terrorists.

In May, the army pointed accusing fingers on some NGOs in the region, accusing them of breaching security and sabotaging counter-terrorism operations.

In its statement yesterday, the army also said it arrested four men in Borno with large consignments of dried fish intended for delivery to the insurgents.