Chibok girls: Troops in Sambisa forest, says DHQ
As part of the steps to rescue the abducted 219 Chibok girls, the Defence Headquarters has confirmed that troops are already in Sambisa Forest where the girls are purportedly being held hostage.
The DHQ was however silent on the next line of action claiming only that the military has a “major plan” in the offing.
It said that contrary to insinuations, Nigerian soldiers are trained for counter-terrorism.
The Director of Defence Information, Maj-Gen. Chris Olukolade made the disclosure at a session with Editors and Defence Correspondents, which was organized by Nigerian Initiative, a non-governmental organization active in the redefinition of Nigerians’ perception of their country.
He said: “What makes it difficult to get to Sambisa Forest? All of it is strategic, gentlemen. We are not even completely out of Sambisa Forest as I am talking to you. We are in Sambisa Forest and we are in places contiguous to it.
“But we have a major plan in mind which I should not be disclosing now. We are not weak, we have the capacity.”
“Sambisa Forest is over 6,000 square kilometres. It is not true that the place was re-taken by Boko Haram. There is freedom of movement in Nigeria and so, people move about freely. Do you know that there are village settlements and communities in the Sambisa Forest and that is another limitation to bombing?”
Concerning foreign interventions to rescue the Chibok girls, Olukolade simply said: “On a diplomatic level, I will say all is well.”
He said Boko Haram had been attacking some towns and villages because the sect was carrying out its “last battle” in desperation.
He said: “The truth about recent attacks by Boko Haram is that all the places that they thought were their bases have been taken over by the military and so out of desperation, they are scattering everywhere. What they are doing is like a last battle for them.
“There had been occasions when the terrorists were reported to be using helicopters in their attacks whereas it was the Nigerian military helicopter that was flying to attack the rebels.
“Nonetheless, we are still committed to securing the civilian population at whatever cost. We are still committed in ensuring that we degrade their ability to continue their activity and eventually eliminate them”,
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