Authorities in the army said on Thursday that six soldiers were killed when troops of the Multinational Joint Task Force engaged Boko Haram and ISWAP terrorists within the vicinity of Mallam Fatori Town in the fringes of the Lake Chad region.
The terrorists, however, did not go unscathed as troops killed 22 members of the sect.
A statement by the Spokesman of the Multinational Joint Task Force, Colonel Muhammad Dole, disclosed that the operation, code-named SHARAN FAGE had troops drawn from Sector 3 Monguno (Nigeria) and Sector 4 Diffa (Niger Republic), and was heavily supported by Operation HADIN KAI (Nigeria) who targeted Boko Haram/ISWAP criminal terrorists hibernating in the vicinity of Mallam Fatori town.
According to the statement, the troops met strong resistance from the terrorists, who launched several mortar attacks, laid Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) along the troops’ route of advance, and further attacks with Vehicle Borne Improvised Explosive Devices (VBIEDs).
However, the troops brought superior firepower to bear on the insurgents forcing them to abandon their enclaves.
During the exchange of fire, Colonel Dole said that 22 Boko Haram terrorists were neutralized during the operation, while 5 of their gun trucks, five motorcycles, and several logistic bunkers were destroyed and eight AK47 Rifles were also recovered from the terrorists.
Sadly, Colonel Dole noted that six members of the Joint Task Force including two officers and 4 other ranks from both Nigeria and the Niger Republic paid the supreme sacrifice in the line of duty with about 16 others wounded in action.
He further revealed that 17 suspects were arrested in the general area of operations and are being profiled.