Anxiety as Boko Haram relocates from Sambisa Forest

By IAfrica
In Nigeria
Aug 24th, 2014
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•Moves to capture Southern Borno

BOKO Haram is on the move from its Sambisa fortress in Borno State.

It is heading towards Southern Borno with several towns and villages already seized by its insurgents. Its members, and possibly captives,are  dispersed  in such places .

Gwoza is the most prominent of the towns thus seized.

A top security source described the situation last night as scary.

The source said the ‘security situation’ in Gwoza and some other parts of the state was worsening.

Investigation by our correspondent revealed that the insurgents, who were encouraged by their recent capture of Gwoza and surrounding villages, have been advancing fast  to the  southern part of the state.

Towns like   Askira/ Uba, Bayo, Biu, Chibok, Damboa,  Shani, Kusar, Kwayu and Hawul  are their immediate targets.

“The insurgents have been rapidly taking over towns and villages in Southern Borno which were hitherto safe from terror attacks.”Unless urgent action is taken by the federal government, they might be in total control of the southern part,” the source said.

“The situation is getting worse because the military, the police and other security agencies have no access to towns and villages overrun by the insurgents.

“Only a comprehensive military campaign can save the entire Borno State from falling into the hands of the insurgents.”

But a military source said: “There is no way the insurgents can take over Borno.We will reclaim anywhere they may be temporarily rampaging.

“We will not unfold our plans but we will surely liberate these areas.”

Sambisa Forest has been the focus of intense covert surveillance by the military, and the foreign experts sent by the United States of America (USA)   and other western nations to assist in locating the over 200 school girls abducted in the April 14 attack by Boko Haram elements on the Government Girls Secondary School, Chibok, Borno State.

It is believed that the girls were taken to the forest which has also served as the training camp of the sect.

Over four months after their abduction, the girls are yet to be located.

The relocation of the insurgents from forest has raised anxiety about the fate of the girls.

The federal government has repeatedly said that patience is crucial in rescuing the girls as using force will endanger their lives.

The Mail of London reported on Wednesday that the Royal Air Force   was sending three fighter jets to help in locating the  girls.

The RAF Tornado GR4s equipped with surveillance facilities, according to the newspaper, will undertake “reconnaissance missions” over the Sambisa Forest where the girls are believed to be held.

Besides, the jets are expected to help the Nigerian authorities in tracking the movements of the insurgents.

The mission is, however, dependent on one of Nigeria’s neighbours allowing Britain the use of its runway.

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