The Defence Headquarters said no fewer than 67 bandits, armed with very high-calibre weapons, including Anti-Aircraft (AA) Guns, have been neutralised and several others injured in air interdiction missions executed by the Air Component of “Operation HADARIN DAJI” at Birnin Kogo Forest in Katsina State.
It also added that about 15 bandits were eliminated in air strikes conducted by the Air Component at Ajjah Forest in Zamfara State.
Confirming the report, Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Defence Headquarters, Major General John Enenche, said both air strikes were carried out sequel to credible Human Intelligence (HUMINT) reports as well as aerial surveillance missions that led to the identification of the two forest hideouts, which housed scores of the bandits along with hundreds of rustled cattle.
He said the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) fighter jets and helicopter gunships dispatched by the Air Component to attack the two locations took turns in engaging the target areas, scoring accurate hits on the caves, which were used by the bandits to shield themselves from air strikes.
Enenche said the Military High Command commended the troops and other security agencies operating in the North West zone for their professionalism and urged them to remain resolute in order to eradicate all bandits.
He asked members of the public within the affected areas to promptly report any persons with suspicious injuries to the nearest security or law enforcement agency post.