Military authorities say over 288 rifles, 35 Rocket Propelled Guns and 35 locally made Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) were recovered after a fierce encounter in Abugasse, Cameroon, close to the Chadian border from suspected terrorists.
This is contained in a statement issued on Tuesday in Abuja by Maj.-Gen. Chris Olukolade, the Director of Defence Information and Coordinator of Joint Information Centre Counter Terrorism Campaign.
“The resolve for collaborative efforts to fight terrorism in the region got a boost recently when Cameroon’s security forces made a huge seizure of arms, apparently meant for use by terrorists operating in Nigeria last weekend.
“Other weapons recovered include pistols, mortar bombs, sub-machine guns and various calibres of ammunition following the arrest of two suspects believed to be major arms suppliers to the terrorists in Nigeria.
“The suspects, who were in possession of over 50 Cameroonian passports, were nabbed in a Toyota Jeep in Abugasse near the Chadian border with Cameroon,’’ the statement read.
Olukolade recalled that the Cameroonian authorities recently pledged to support Nigeria’s counter terrorism efforts.
He said that the renewed offensive on terrorists by Nigerian troops had continued to record series of arrests of terrorists and recovery of arms, especially close to the nation’s border with Cameroon.
According to the statement, apart from the arms recovered following disclosure from captured terrorists lately, more arms have been captured in the ongoing offensive operations.
The defence information boss said that a terrorist driving in a green Peugeot vehicle with registration number Bauchi 264 AA, heading to Maiduguri from Alagarno, was arrested at a check point during the weekend.
He said that the arrest of the terrorist had led to the recovery of 15 AK47 rifles and 12 magazines and various yet to be assembled rifles.
“Meanwhile, the offensive on terrorists in various fronts is continuing. The Alagarno area, various points of Sambisa forest and suburbs have been witnessing intense operations since Monday.
“Apart from several dead terrorists, 14 vehicles which were either being used for operation or hidden by the terrorists in various parts of the forests and theatres have been destroyed.
“Various calibres of weapons and ammunitions were also recovered in the course of fighting and subsequent cordon and search of the areas.
“Intensive air and ground surveillance are also ongoing in the general area,’’ Olukolade was quoted as saying. [NAN]