Troops did not retreat from Sambisa Forest, says DHQ | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Troops did not retreat from Sambisa Forest, says DHQ

Posted: Apr 29, 2015 at 4:20 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Stella Omona



The Defence Headquarters (DHQ) has dismissed media reports that the troops prosecuting the Boko Haram war have retreated from Sambisa forest and that the terrorists have recaptured  Mafa and Marte, accusing the sect’s sympathisers of fabricating stories to encourage them.

Director, Defence Information, Major General Chris Olukolade, said on Monday in Abuja that military operations to eliminate all terrorists hideouts were going on well and that the terrorists were being seriously decimated.

“Also, troops have not retreated from Sambisa forest as claimed by same sources.  Rather, the operation is progressing and gaining increasing momentum towards clearing all terrorists hideouts in the forest.

It is noteworthy that it is becoming common for stories of attacks on some remote settlements to be fabricated and attributed to anonymous or unidentifiable source in remote places.  This is apparently the work of terrorists sympathisers or propagandists.

“The reports by some media outfits claiming that terrorists are now in control of Mafa in Borno State are false.  The truth is that an attempt by a group of fleeing terrorists who strayed towards the town and engaged in their typical suicide attack was duly repelled by troops.  Similarly, the claim by some media organisations that terrorists chased out troops and took over Marte cannot be verified as troops were busy elsewhere during the said attack,” he said.

He stressed, however, that all efforts  to track the terrorists who were reported to have attacked the town have not indicated their presence as claimed.

“Surveillance activities are however ongoing although there has been no indication of the large number of terrorists as being claimed in some reports attributed to anonymous sources.  The terrorist are certainly no longer capable of that level of coordinated action by thousands of terrorists as reported.

“Military operations to eliminate all terrorists hideouts are going on well and the terrorists are being seriously decimated.  They will continue to be pursued and prevented from constituting danger to civilian population in their desperation for survival, suicide or publicity.

“The media is advised to ignore fabrication being churned out by some terrorists sympathizers trying to encourage the terrorists who are in disarray.   The truth is that the operation to decimate them from Nigerian territories is progressing well.   The military will not be dissuaded by the resurgence of false reports on the operations.  The progress will be prosecuted as necessary.”