Troops kill 23 militants, destroy 38 camps, illegal refineries

TWENTY-THREE militants were reportedly killed, while 38 militant camps and 91 illegal refineries, as well as bunkering sites were destroyed during the just concluded Operation Crocodile Smile in the Niger Delta.

The General Commanding Officer (GOC) of the 82 Division of the Nigerian Army, Enugu,  Major-General Ibrahim Attahiru, made this disclosure while addressing journalists in Enugu, on Saturday.

According to him, the army recorded four casualties,  warning that the army formation in Enugu would continue to halt the myriad of security threats cum economic sabotage within its area of responsibility.

The GOC, who noted that the army division would continue to maintain operational tempo to consolidate on the  gains it achieved during the exercise,reiterated that army formation “would continue to defeat any attempt at brazen attacks on national critical infrastructure, oil and gas resources and overall strangulation of the socio-economy of law abiding citizenry by any group of militants or criminals.”

According to him, “Crocodile Smile ended not just as a training exercise, but also as a way of demonstrating the capacity and efficacy of the Nigerian Army to secure lives and property in the Niger Delta and South-East Nigeria.”

“Unfortunately, four among our troops got drowned in the general area of Brass, Bayelsa State, due to a boat mishap while another one was killed in action elsewhere around Obiozunmini, near Obite in Onelga, Rivers State, in fire fight with the criminals/militants,” he stated.

“Most importantly, the Division is ever committed to the strategic direction of the Chief of Army Staff, Chief of Defence State and the President and Commander-In-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria”, he added.