Troops kill bandits, rescue 14 kidnap victims in Katsina, Zamfara

TROOPS of Operation Sahel Sanity on Monday announced the rescue of 14 victims including two women who were kidnapped in Faskari and Mararaban Kawaye areas of Katsina State after a gun battle ensued between them and  the bandits. 

Bernard Onyeuko,  the acting Director, Defence Media Operations, who announced this in a statement said troops Defence Headquarters recorded several successful operations across different parts of the country which the military had embarked on during the past week.

Onyeuko, a Brigadier General explained that the victims, who were travelling along the route in a commercial vehicle ran into the bandits who diverted their vehicle in an attempt to take them hostage.

However, he said the troops closed in on the suspects which forced them to abandon the two kidnapped women.

“Following, prompt information from residents of the area the troops quickly mobilized and pursued the bandits forcing them to abandon the vehicle with the 14 passengers who were safely rescued,” Onyeuko said.

“The troops swiftly tracked the bandits through their withdrawal route and engaged them in a firefight which forced the bandits to abandon the kidnapped victims and flee into the bush.”

According to him, troops exploited the area and recovered one motorcycle abandoned by the fleeing bandits.

In a related development, the defence spokesperson stated that security operatives deployed in Daki Takwas intercepted and arrested 17 armed Yansakai members on seven motorcycles at Danmarke village in Bukkuyum Local Government Area of Zamfara State.

He disclosed that about  40 cattle rustled at Kwanar Maje area were reportedly were recovered and returned to their owners.

Onyeuko said preliminary investigation revealed that the suspects were from Maga in Kebbi State adding that items recovered from them included 12 locally fabricated dane guns, seven motorcycles and assorted charms.

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The bandit leader identified as Sada surrendered to the troops at Forward Operation Base, Dansadau after submitting three AK-47 rifles, one sub-machine gun and two magazines.

He further disclosed that troops conducting clearance operation at Shekewa general area of the state destroyed several bandits camps and arrested three suspected bandits identified as Adamu Musa, Hassan Bello and Rabiu Salisu.

“A suspected bandit was killed while trying to escape on a motorcycle, adding that troops responding to a distress call equally foiled an attempt by bandits to attack and loot Magami village,” he added.

Also, he said on 10 September, troops acting on actionable intelligence arrested one illegal arms supplier named Usman Ibrahim from Ryom in Barkin Ladi Local Government Area of Plateau State.

The suspect was arrested with 890 rounds of 7.62mm special ammunition carefully concealed in his vehicle.

“Other items recovered from him include a jackknife, one pistol grip, a Nigeria Police identity card, and N2,230,000. Preliminary investigation revealed that the suspect is a major illegal arms dealer supplying bandits in the North-West,” he said.

The army said all the arrested suspects were undergoing further interrogations.

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