*14 Soldiers, Several Civilians Killed During Battle With Insurgents
After hours of heavy gun duel with Boko Haram in Damaturu, the Nigerian soldiers have finally regained the Yobe state capital on a mop-up operation, according to military authorities.
The military said troops were able to successfully foil and contain the terrorists attempt to occupy parts of Damaturu town.
The authorities admitted that the terrorists launched massive attack from different directions of the Damaturu the previous day, stressing that troops were promptly mobilized to repel the attack that lasted the night resulting in heavy casualty on the terrorists before the rest of them retreated.
According to a statement posted on the website of the Defence Headquarters, weapons including IEDs and Rocket Propelled Grenades captured from the terrorists are being compiled while their dead as well as civilian casualties are yet to be determined.
The statement read, “Pursuit of the fleeing terrorists is also ongoing while the 5 soldiers who were seriously wounded in the attack are being treated in the military medical facility. Although normalcy has been restored, the town is also being reinforced with more troops. More details later.
“Meanwhile the situation in Baga is still being studied to determine the appropriate action that will restore law, order and normalcy to the community after the attack mounted by hundreds of heavily armed terrorists last weekend.
“A total of 14 soldiers were killed in action during the attack, while over 30 who were wounded are now receiving medical attention. Most of those declared missing in action have also rejoined their unit in the ongoing reorganization for further operations.
“Although several of the terrorists died in the course of the attack and efforts at repelling the assailants, the actual figure of civilian casualties is yet to be creditably determined as is being propagated in certain quarters.
“The Nigerian military has not given up on Baga and other localities where terrorists activities are now prevalent. Appropriate plans, men and resources are presently being mobilized to address the situation.
“The Nigerian component of the Multinational Joint Task Force which retreated from its Baga Headquarters last weekend and more of the troops are regrouping for necessary debrief and briefing for subsequent missions.
“It is necessary to reassure Nigerians that the Nigerian Armed Forces and security agencies are capable of flushing out the terrorists from Baga and all parts of the nation’s territory where their activities are prevalent. No portion of Nigeria’s territory has been or will be conceded to terrorists.
“The use of all available resources within the armed forces will continue to be maximized to sustain the tempo of the counter terrorism campaign towards containing and eradicating terrorism in the nation’s territory.
“The support and understanding of all partners and neighboring countries will however continue to be utilized where available and relevant in the conduct of the mission and in line with existing agreement and understanding.