Defence Headquarters (DHQ) has said national parks, game reserves and forests provide safe haven for terrorists disturbing the peace and security of the country.
The director of Defence Media Operations, Major General Edward Buba who disclosed this yesterday during a briefing on military operations in the last one week said troops neutralised 50 terrorists, arrested 114 terrorists and rescued 49 kidnapped hostages.
He said the troops arrested 19 suspected oil thieves and seized stolen products worth N968,160,050.00) only.
The director said the troops recovered 65 assorted weapons and 400 assorted ammunition.
He said the Safe havens provide a support base for insurgent activities.
“For instance, these safe havens provide the flow of funding, material, weapons, fighters, command and control that supports terrorism and insurgency confronting us. There are safe havens spread across various theatres ranging from the tumbuns in the NE to other locations such as national parks, game reserves and forests across the country.
“The military has identified several of these safe havens and operations are targeted towards ensuring that they are completely dismantled. Recently, one of the safe havens in Aku Forest in Okigwe LGA of Imo State in the SE was invaded. Troops found unspeakable and unprintable activities going on in the camp. These extremists are cannibals feasting on fellow humans and slaughtering them for other devilish acts.”
General Buba while calling for regional support said “Some of the safe havens from which these insurgents and terrorists operate from often extend across the borders with other countries, thereby making it a regional issue. Nevertheless, the objective of ongoing operations is to ensure these safe havens are completely destroyed within the shores of the country”.
He said the military will continue to fine tune its operations to ensure maximum protection of citizens and restore security across the country.
“We are getting it right and continue to encourage citizens that know something to say something, so that we can do something about it. Together we win the fight”.
In a breakdown of recoveries in the last one week, he said 25 AK47 rifles, four locally fabricated rifles, four pistols, six pump action guns, 12 dane guns, three AK47 rifles loaded with 50 rounds of 7.62mm special ammo among others were recovered.
Whereas in the Niger Delta area, he said troops discovered and destroyed 54 dugout pits, 66 boats, 138 storage tanks, 253 cooking ovens, two pumping machines, eight speedboats, 17 hoses, 18 drums, two cylinders and 53 illegal refining sites.
Troops also recovered 983,350 litres of stolen crude oil, 144,980 litres of illegally refined AGO and 71,650 litres of DPK.