No fewer than 20 victims of kidnapping, including 11 women, a truck driver, and an undisclosed number of children abducted by bandits at different locations in Katsina State have been rescued by troops of Operation Sahel Sanity.
Another set of eight persons from hoodlums dressed in military camouflage at Fankama and Sabon Layi area of Faskari Local Government Area of the state were also rescued.
The Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Maj. Gen. John Enenche made the disclosure during the weekly briefing on security operations in Abuja on Thursday.
Enenche said the female traders and children were on their way to Batsari market when they were abducted by the bandits along Shimfida–Gurbi Road.
“On September 17, 2020, troops responding to a distress call rescued eight kidnapped victims from suspected bandits at Fankama and Sabon Layi area of Faskari Local Government Area of Katsina State.
“This was as a result of actionable intelligence that bandits dressed in military camouflage uniforms were sighted with kidnapped victims; the troops responded swiftly and made contact with the bandits forcing them to abandon the victims,” the coordinator stated.
Within the period, the troops deployed in Forward Operations Base Dansadau also arrested a suspected bandit on a motorcycle on his way to Dandalla village in Dansadau, Maru Local Government Area of Zamfara State, with one Pump Action rifle and three live cartridges carefully concealed in a bag.
The Defence Headquarters also said preliminary investigation revealed that the ammunition was to be delivered to a bandit leader at a location in Dansadau.
Similarly, two gunrunners were arrested in possession of 1,620 rounds of 7.62mm ammunition at Kudaru Hill along Kaduna-Jos Road in Lere Local Government Area of Kaduna State.
Enenche also revealed that the air component of Operation Thunder Strike killed several bandits in airstrikes executed at Kwaimbana forest area of Kaduna State.
He said, “Equally, on September 18, troops of Forward Operations Base Burukusuma patrol team killed seven bandits at Magira village of Zamfara State. Furthermore, on September 19, troops of Operation Hadarin Daji in conjunction with vigilantes arrested two bandits with N1.3 million at Baworaje village in Talata Mafara LGA of Zamfara State.”
In the North-East, Enenche said a high profile Boko Haram commander surrendered with his four wives to the troops, adding that a BH fighter was nabbed at Kamuya in Biu Local Government Area of Borno State and nine other criminals in Wukari Local Government Area of Taraba State.