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Nigerian Army shares old pictures to depict recent victory on terrorists

Nigerian army soldiers stand at a base. Photo: Audu Marte, AFP/TheDefencePost 4 mins read

CLAIM: Nigerian Army released pictures showing destroyed vehicles, guns and ammunition recovered from its victory over Islamic State West African Province (ISWAP) terrorists in Damasak.

The pictures were published on the internet earlier in March 2021

Full Text

On Friday 16th April 2021, the Nigerian Army via its official Twitter handle (@HQNigerianArmy), shared a report of its victory over Islamic State West African Province (ISWAP) terrorists in Damasak, Borno State, North-East Nigeria. The Army also posted pictures of multiple damaged vehicles, as well as arms and ammunition purportedly belonging to the terrorists.

Screenshot of the post on the Nigerian Army Official Twitter handle

In the report titled “How ISWAP Senior Commander, Fighters on Revenge Mission Met Their Waterloo at Damasak”, the Nigerian Army said the terrorists “met their waterloo as they made a come-back following the neutralization of 12 high value ISWAP commanders in Mobbar LGA in a week-long air and ground operations”. The Twitter post also included a link to the complete report.

Continuing on the Army’s Official Facebook Page, the report signed by Mohammed Yerima, a Brigadier General and Army Spokesperson, said the victory over the terrorists was a result of well-coordinated ground bombardments and aerial strikes by the Nigerian military on various locations in the Northeast.

The statement read: “A senior Commander of ISWAP, Bukar Gana Fitchmeram (aka Abu Aisha), and scores of his fighters who were on revenge mission at Damasak, fell to the fire power of Nigerian troops Thursday. The terrorist and his fighters met their waterloo as they made a come-back following the neutralization of 12 high value ISWAP commanders in Mobbar Local Government Area of Borno State in a week-long air and ground operations by the Nigerian military.

“In a well-coordinated ground bombardments and aerial strikes by the Nigerian military on various locations in the Northeast, the terrorists who were denied any sanctuary or respite desperately conducted two separate failed attacks on Gajiram and Damasak.

“The deadly air strikes conducted on Tudun Wulgo, Zari and Tumbun Alhaji, Kusuma, Sigir in Ngala and Arijallamari, in Abadam, Marte and Ngala Local government Areas, led to the killing of top ISWAP Leaders. The Commanders that perished in the airstrikes included; Mohammad Fulloja, Ameer Mallam Bello, Ba’a kaka Tunkushe, Abu Muktar Al -Ansari, Ameer Abba Kaka, Abu Huzaifa, Ameer Modu Kwayem, while Goni Mustapha who was the Chief Imam of the ISWAP escaped with bullet wounds.

“Troops’ artillery bombardment and air strikes on April 6 also resulted to the elimination of two top ISWAP leaders including Abu-Rabi and Muhammed Likita as well as scores of their troops and body guards around the axis of Kusuma, Sigir in Ngala and Arijallamari in Abadam Local Government Areas.

“The terrorists’ storage facilities that housed weapons used to conduct several attacks was also targeted and destroyed in the air raid by the Air Component of Operation Lafita Dole.

“On the night of Saturday, April 10, three other terrorist Commanders including Ameer Umar, Abu Ubaida and Abu Salim were ambushed and killed by own troops around Wulgo/Logomani axis close to Cameroon borders while attempting to attack locals and rustle their cows. The devastating air strikes and artillery bombardment on the ISWAP camps had pushed the surviving elements to conduct desperate attacks and looting missions for food and drugs for their wounded colleagues.

“Also, on April 11, the Nigerian military bombardments eliminated scores of ISWAP/Boko Haram terrorists on five guntrucks in Damasak. Some of the terrorists were hits close to the perimeter fencing, while others were neutralized while attempting to loot food items in a store belonging to the United Nations as well as drugs and ambulance. However, three soldiers and some civilians lost their lives while properties were burnt in the town.

“Some of the terrorist still got access to the town burning and looting items before vacating the area. It is also noteworthy that Damasak has been attacked several times and failed. Troops’ fighting spirit remains very high in spite of the nefarious activities of some local informants who often tip the Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists on troops’ movements and positions.”

Verification

A Google reverse image and Twitter search by Dubawa showed that the pictures recently shared by the Nigerian Army, had previously been posted in March 2021, on social media by a Twitter user Calibre Obscura (@CalibreObscura), referring to an earlier ISIS attack in Damasak, Borno State.  

The Twitter user with the description “Arms Research and Occasional Effortposter” posted on 15th March 2021: “After a large ISIS attack in #Damasak (VBIED used), images have been posted of 9 AKs, an RPG-7 and an NSV HMG recovered by NA along with two technicals, all burned out. Currently unclear who their original owner was. ISIS claim 12 dead/wounded, but no proof yet.”

But, on Friday 16th April 2021, barely a month after they were first shared, the Nigerian Army published the same pictures attached to a report claiming it had killed about 13 commanders of the dreaded terrorist sects, Boko Haram and the Islamic State West African Province (ISWAP).

Conclusion

The pictures posted by the Nigerian Army on Friday 16th April 2021, describing its victory over Islamic State West African Province (ISWAP) terrorists had appeared on the internet about a month earlier on 15th March 2021, showing evidence of an attack in Damasak, Borno State, involving the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS).

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