Tuesday, 21 August 2018


The Force Commander, Operation Whirl Stroke (OPWS), Adeyemi Yekini, said on Monday that troops killed 21 armed herdsmen and lost one soldier in Benue State.

Mr. Yekini told reporters at the Tactical Air Command Headquarters, Makurdi, OPWS headquarters that two soldiers also sustained various degrees of injures during the operation and were receiving treatment at the Nigeria Air Force (NAF) Base Hospital.

The commander explained that 15 armed herdsmen were killed on Saturday along Gbajimba-Akor Tomata axis during gunshot exchange between troops and armed herdsmen that lasted for about 2 hours.

He confirmed that OPWS lost one soldier during the encounter while two officers sustained gunshot injuries.

“During the firefight, the Mi35 spotted a group of about 20 armed herdsmen riding on motorcycles moving along the axis towards Nasarawa State.

“Fifteen of the armed herdsmen on the motorcycles were neutralized with rocket fire from the Mi35 while others escaped with varying degrees of injuries.

“OPWS troops lost one soldier while two others sustained gunshots wounds. The two personnel are currently responding to treatment at NAF Base Hospital.”

Mr. Yekini further disclosed that the six other armed herdsmen were killed in Guma on August 4, when troops made contact with armed militiamen moving with a large herd of cattle between Benue and Nasarawa states.

According to him, nothing significant was found, adding that it was not clear whether or not Gana was killed during the assault.

“It was not clear if Gana was killed during the assault, but a trail of blood seen in the building suspected to be where he slept, suggests he might have been hit.

“A motorcycle usually used by Gana was also badly damaged during the air strike. Efforts are in progress to confirm if Gana was killed in the attack and if not, we will still go after him.”

He further disclosed that OPWS also recovered assorted automatic weapons and ammunition from armed militiamen since the beginning of the operation six weeks ago.

“OPWS recovered seven automatic weapons from armed militiamen in the past six weeks alone, four in Nasarawa and three in Benue State.

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