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Alleged killing of Chibok girls in air strikes mere propaganda by dying sect —Air Force

The Nigerian Air Force has described the latest video released online by the Boko Haram terrorists group alleging the killing of some of the abducted Chibok schoolgirls by the military fighter jets as not only a ruse, but another mischievous effort by the dying sect to draw public attention to itself.

It said whereas the video showed a cross section of the abducted girls and an airborne aircraft, it provided no evidence that the supposed casualties were as a result of any air to ground attack.

More so, it said there was sufficient evidence to believe that the casualties were arranged, as the positioning of the bodies clearly defied any natural setting of a location that had undergone aerial bombardment.

In a late night statement on Tuesday, the air force said the impact and accompanying degree of damage to the bodies would have been more, were they have died from air strike.

According to the statement, it was, therefore, clear that the video was a make-up story to discredit the force, and more importantly, a deliberate effort to whip up sentiment among the public, in order to dissuade and discontinue the use of air power which had proved effective and a major determinant factor in the successes recorded in the ongoing counter-insurgency operations in the North-East.

“The NAF has put in place a number of measures to avoid the incidence of collateral damage.

“To this end, considerable effort is committed to undertaking intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) missions, both day and night, to ensure that only legitimate military targets are engaged.

“Besides, NAF ISR platforms carry highly sophisticated equipment on-board, which are able to provide pin-point accurate intelligence about target location and description as depicted in the enclosed video on our ISR operations.

“And where there are doubts about target status, we do not undertake strike missions. In any case, the NAF, being a professional fighting force, has not and will not engage in unprofessional practices in discharging its statutory duties.

“The NAF will like to assure Nigerians, living within the vicinity of its operations, of their safety,” the statement read.

It also urged Nigerians to disregard the  video as a mere propaganda, while it restated its commitment to restoration of peace in the North-East and other troubled areas in the country.”