Boko Haram Leader, Shekau Injured in Airforce Attack

Indication has emerged that leader of the terrorist group, Boko Haram, Abubakar Shekau, has been injured and one of his Deputies killed in an air strike in northeast Nigeria, civilian and security sources told AFP on Wednesday.
Two Nigerian Air Force jets bombarded fighters who had gathered for prayers in Balla village, some 40 kilometres (25 miles) from Damboa, on the edge of the Sambisa Forest, last Friday.
“Shekau was wounded in the bombings and is believed to be receiving treatment near the Nigerian border with Cameroon around Kolofata,” said one source with contacts within Boko Haram.
“His Deputy, Abba Mustapha, alias Malam Abba, was killed in the attack along with another key lieutenant, Abubakar Gashua, alias Abu Aisha,” he added.
Babakura Kolo, a member of the civilian militia in the Borno State capital, Maiduguri, gave a similar account, saying “Shekau was injured and a number of commanders were killed.
“Among them is his Deputy called Malam Abba. They suffered heavy casualties because the bombings targeted a large gathering of his followers attending Friday prayers.”
However, a terse statement on Tuesday by the Nigerian Airforce said many suspected leaders of Boko Haram may have been killed in the air strike carried out by Air Force fighter jets on locations believed to be hideouts of the deadly insurgents.
According to the statement issued by the Directorate of Public Relations and Information of the Nigeria Air Force, said the strike took place on April 28, last Friday, in a village called Mangosum in Borno State.
The incident was not reported until Tuesday when the Director of Air Force Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Olatokunbo Adesanya, issued the statement.
He said the attack was effected following a NAF intelligence.
He said while a large number of suspected Boko Haram leaders were killed during the raid, troops also recovered a large cache of arms and ammunition at the attacked location.
“At dawn on 28 April 2017, the Nigerian Air Force Component of Operation LAFIYA DOLE conducted an air interdiction mission on some remnants of the Boko Haram Terrorists in a village 3.42 km Northeast of Mangosum”, said Air Commodore Adesanya.
“On the previous day, the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) had successfully provided air cover to troops of 27 Task Force Battalion thereby enabling them to repel an attack by the Boko Haram Terrorists.
“Subsequently, a NAF Intelligence, Surveillance and “Reconnaissance aircraft trailed the remnants of the insurgents that attacked the Battalion to a village near Mangosum, following which the NAF conducted the air interdiction mission with two Alpha Jet and one F-7Ni aircraft.
“Battle Damage Assessment conducted after the strike showed that several leaders of the Boko Haram Terrorist Organization and their followers were killed during the attacks.
“In addition, a sizeable cache of weapons and equipment was destroyed. With the successful air interdiction, the Nigerian Air Force was able to frustrate yet another attempt by the remnants of the Boko Haram Terrorists to regroup in the Sambisa general area”, he said.

Author: News Editor

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