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UPDATE: Military recaptures Baga

A statement by Defence spokesman Major General Chris Olukolade said‎: “A large number of terrorists have drowned in the Lake Chad as they fled the…

A statement by Defence spokesman Major General Chris Olukolade said‎: “A large number of terrorists have drowned in the Lake Chad as they fled the heavy bombardment by Nigerian Air force heralding the advance of Nigerian troops on mission to flush them out of Baga.”

He said “Not even the strategy of mining over 1500 spots with land mines on the routes leading to the town could save the terrorists from the aggressive move of advancing troops.

“All the land mines were skillfully cleared one after the other. Eventually, the resistance of the terrorists collapsed and the land forces finally stormed the town in the early hours of Friday.”

The DHQ statement said: “Many of the terrorists died while an unknown but substantial number of them fled with various degrees of injury, in the series of encounter along the routes of advance as troops headed for Baga.”

The DHQ said apart from the five anti-aircraft guns and the rifles captured from the terrorists, over 34 motorcycles and five vehicles including trucks being used for operations by the terrorists were destroyed in the course of the battle.

“The troops finally began clearing the terrorists from Baga on arrival in the town early Saturday morning.”

It noted that a comprehensive cordon and search phase of military operation has now commenced to enable troops mop up arms and ammunition and also apprehend any terrorist who might be hiding in the vicinity.

The exercise will also determine details of the casualties inflicted or incurred in the course of the operations to clear Baga and environ of terrorists.

“Similar exercise is being carried out in over 12 locations namely Gajigana, Ngaze, Ngenzai, Marte Junction, Mile 90, Yoyo, Kekeno, Kukawa, Cross Kauwa, Kangarwa, Amirari and other localities where troops have flushed out the terrorists in the operations preceding the entry to Baga. The troops are now dominating and conducting aggressive patrols in the locations. The morale of troops remain high,” the DHQ statement said.

Earlier…
The Defence Headquarters (DHQ) has announced that troops have recaptured Baga town in Borno State from the Boko Haram militants
.

Baga is one of the major fishing towns in the north east that had been overran and devastated by terrorists resulting in the death of scores of people.

In a message on its Twitter handle, the DHQ said troops after a fierce battle with the terrorists recaptured the town.

The Tweet reads: ‎”Troops have this afternoon captured ‎Baga‎ after fierce battle with terrorists. Heavy Casualties. Mopping up ongoing.”

The military has been pushing the Boko Haram insurgents back in recent weeks after the general elections were postponed from February 14 to March 28 on the advice of the security chiefs who sought for six weeks extension to fight off the militants.

Neighbouring Niger, Cameroon and Chad have also rev up their offensive against the extremist group.

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