By Jude Michael
The Joint troops of 82 Division Nigerian Army and the Nigerian Police have neutralized three members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its armed affiliate, Eastern Security Network (ESN) in a fierce encounter that ensued during a clearance operation in the early hours of Monday, 18 September 2023 at Igboro Forest, between Arochukwu and Ohafia Local Government Areas of Abia State.
According to Brigadier General Onyema Nwachukwu, the troops destroyed several camps used by members of the groups to perpetrate heinous crimes.
He said the camps were uncovered after several weeks of credible surveillance revealed that IPOB/ESN were using the forest as a combat training ground for their members and as a base for planning and launching attacks on targeted civilians, security operatives and government facilities in the state.
On further exploring the camp, the troops, he said, recovered several weapons and ammunition, among others.
The Items recovered as stated by Gen. Nwachukwu include: One improvised 16 Multi Barrel Rocket Launcher (MBRL) gun mounted on a vehicle; one improvised 12 MBRL gun; one improvised 6 MBRL gun; one AK 47 Rifle; one dane gun; 6 locally made Rocket Launchers; four Improvised Explosive Devices; five fragmental jackets; one Baofeng Radio; military camouflage uniforms and several assorted charms.
In a similar development that also took place in the early hours of Monday, 18 September 2023, same troops of 82 Division, NA, in synergy with the Nigerian Police Force, acting on credible intelligence, busted an IPOB/ESN hideout at Ezioha Mgbowo in Awgu Local Government Area of Enugu State.
The armed fighters were perfecting plans to enforce the illegal sit-at-home order in the area, when the vigilant troops swooped on them.
The fighters, who opened fire on sighting troops approaching their camp, were however overwhelmed in the fire fight that followed by the troops who neutralized three of the fighters, while others fled in disarray.
The troops, according to Nwachukwu, recovered three Pump Action guns and 10 machetes from the fleeing fighters.
‘Members of the public are implored to continue to support the Nigeria Army and other security agencies with credible information to enhance the fight against terrorism, insurgency and other criminal activities,’ he said.