The Air Component of Operation Delta Safe has identified and destroyed seven illegal refining sites in Rivers State.
A statement by the Nigeria Air Force (NAF) director of Public Relations and Information, Air Cdre Edward Gabkwet, said the airstrikes were conducted on Cawthorne Channel and Bille, both located in Degema local government area of Rivers State.
He said the airstrikes in Cawthorne Channel were conducted on September 15, revealing four active illegal refining sites with dug-out reservoirs and surface storage tanks suspected to be containing illegal refined products.
He said the sites were subsequently destroyed.
The NAF spokesman said similar airstrikes were also conducted at Bille on September 16, 2023 and in the early hours of September 17, 2023.
He added that in one of the sites, a Cotonou boat suspected to be siphoning crude oil from a flow station was engaged in several passes and destroyed.
The NAF spokesman added that Cawthorne Channel and Bille in the last two months have “accounted for the majority of oil theft and illegal oil refining activities in Rivers State”.
He said over 30 illegal oil refining sites in the two locations have been destroyed by the Land, Maritime and Air Components of Operation Delta Safe within the two months.
“These efforts will be sustained in these locations and others until oil thieves and their accomplices desist from their illegal activities,” he stated.