On Thursday night, Islamic State in West Africa Province (ISWAP) fighters attacked Rann, a town in Kala Balge LGA of Borno State, killing a commanding officer and a senior officer in one of the battalions of operation Hadin Kai.
Boko Haram attacked Malam Fatori in Abadam Local Government Area, Borno State, about 24 hours after the Rann attack.
In the battle at Rann, Nigerian troops killed 20 ISWAP fighters. They were said to have engaged the terrorists who arrived in large groups, and the gunfight lasted several hours.
Two senior officers, whose identities have not been revealed, were allegedly killed alongside five soldiers.
The terrorists stormed Rann on several gun trucks, according to a military intelligence source.
“During the crossfire, the terrorists were unable to subdue the gallant troops,” the source said. We recovered 24 of their dead bodies killed in the gun battle as of this morning’s count, while the rest fled with injuries.
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“Apart from their gun trucks, which were completely destroyed by airstrikes, we also recovered huge sophisticated weapons.”
ISWAP fighters killed Dzarma Zirkusu, a Brigadier General and commander of the army brigade in Chibok, three weeks ago.
Zirkusu was ambushed and killed on his way to Askira to provide support for the troops. Along with three soldiers, the general was killed.
Malam Fatori was also targeted.
Meanwhile, Boko Haram attacked Malam Fatori in Borno State’s Abadam Local Government Area yesterday. This comes just over 24 hours after the Rann attack.
The military was still fighting to drive the terrorists out of town as of press time.
Governor Babagana Zulum had insisted on returning displaced persons by December 31 in Malam Fatori, one of the two LGAs without human activities.
In preparation for the return of 1,000 refugees from the Niger Republic, 500 mobile police officers were deployed to clear the town.
This is in addition to the army base in the deserted town and other security agents such as the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, the Department of State Services, and the civilian JTF who were stationed there to assist in securing the town in preparation for the refugees’ safe return.
The mobile police crack team has since left the town and returned to Maiduguri, but military personnel have remained.
Onyema Nwachukwu, the army’s spokesman, was unavailable for comment on the terror attacks in Rann and Malam Fatori.