By Doris Esa
Abuja – The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has destroyed an Islamic State of West Africa Province (ISWAP) staging area at Gashigar in Borno, and neutralised several of the insurgents.
NAF said it also took out terrorists’ hideouts at Tumbun Rego on the fringes of Lake Chad and at Bula Bello near Sambisa Forest all in Borno.
Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, NAF Director of Public Relations and Information made this known in a statement on Monday in Abuja.
Daramola said this was achieved in air strikes conducted by the Air Task Force (ATF) of Operation LAFIYA DOLE on Friday and Saturday on the heels of credible intelligence reports.
He explained that the attack on Gashigar was executed on Jan. 25 after Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) missions indicated that the location, with its defensive parapets and underground tunnels, was being used by ISWAP elements as a staging area, where some of their leaders and fighters meet to plan and launch attacks.
“Accordingly, the ATF detailed its fighter aircraft to attack the identified location, destroying the structures, killing several terrorists in the process.
“Similarly, fighter jets were dispatched to attack Tumbun Rego and Bula Bello on Jan.24, after ISR aircraft detected significant activities in the two settlements.
“The attack aircraft effectively engaged the targeted locations equally destroying terrorist assets and neutralising several of their combatants.
“In all, scores of terrorists were neutralised in the three attacks, including some of their key leaders as later confirmed by Human Intelligence reports,” he said.
Daramola said NAF, operating in concert with surface forces, would sustain its air campaign to shape the battle space in the North East for effective conduct of further ground and air operations.