No fewer than 407 persons in connection with Boko Haram insurgents have been arrested on the Lake Chad islands by Nigerian soldiers engaged in the Lafiya Dole counterinsurgency operation in the north-east.
The suspects are either mujahedeen or their family members, the military authorities said on Saturday in a statement issued by the spokesman of the Operation Lafiya Dole, Onyema Nwachukwu.
The arrest, the biggest so far, was made following a sustained air and ground coordinated offensive targeting locations of the insurgents around the islands.
The suspects comprised 167 active Boko Haram fighters, 67 women and 173 children who were confirmed wives and kids of the insurgents.
The military said many of the insurgents were also killed during the raids.
Mr. Nwachukwu, a colonel, who is Deputy Director Army Public Relations, said 57 insurgents were arrested during a seperate operation on another location.
According to him, within the past weeks, 15 other insurgents had surrendered to Nigeria troops.
“Our heartfelt sympathy and condolences go to families and relations of troops as well as civilians who paid the supreme price in the encounters and callous suicide bomb and Improvised Explosive Device (IED) attacks by the terrorists,’ he said.
He assured that troops will continue relentlessly in the ongoing offensive to rid the north east hinterlands of insurgents, urging members of the public to be more security conscious and vigilant.
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