The Nigerian Air Force (NAF),says its Air Task Force (ATF) of Operation DIRAN MIKIYA has neutralised several bandits at a compound in Rugu forest in Zamfara.
NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, disclosed this in a statement on Thursday in Abuja.
He explained that the air strikes were preceded by days of Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) missions, initiated based on credible Human Intelligence reports.
Daramola said the intelligence reports led to the identification of several camps being used by the bandits to launch attacks against innocent civilians.
“One of the air interdiction missions was conducted at dawn (today), Feb.7 at a location in Rugu Forest South of Gurbin Baure, where some armed bandits were seen assembled by a logistics truck parked near their compound-hideout.
“The ATF dispatched a Nigerian Air Force (NAF) attack helicopter and an Alpha Jet to engage the bandits’ truck and compound.
“Overhead the target area, the bandits were seen dispersing in different directions with some attempting to make a getaway in the truck,” he said.
He said the helicopter strafed the moving truck in successive passes immobilising it and neutralising its occupants.
“The Alpha Jet simultaneously attacked the compound and destroyed one of the huts harbouring the bandits, which was seen engulfed in flames,” he said.
The spokesman said credible Intelligence sources later revealed that several bandits were killed as a result of the attack.
“NAF, working in close coordination with surface forces and other security agencies, will sustain its reconnaissance and air interdiction missions to neutralise the armed bandits and deny them freedom of action in the area,” he said.