Niger: Residents flee as soldiers withdraw from community after terror attack

Men of the Nigerian Army deployed to fight menacing terrorists in Allawa axis of terror-ravaged Shiroro local government area, Niger state, North-central Ngeria, Thursday withdrew from the area after losing two officers to improvised explosive devices (IEDs).

The Niger state Commissioner for Homeland Security, Garba Mohammed, a retired major-general, said the soldiers were newly deployed to the community in response to incessant attacks by terror groups operating in the axis.

Mohammed said apart from two officers killed by the IEDs, nine others were injured and currently admitted at an undisclosed hospital in the state. The commissioner’s estimates were corroborated by the locals who do not want their names mentioned.

However, the commissioner stated that the withdrawal of the soldiers was in line with “administrative arrangement” for reinforcement against the terrorists.

The spokesperson for the Nigerian Army, Brigadier-General Onyema Nwachukwu, declined to comment on the development Thursday.

Nwachukwu said: “I think we need to be a little bit discreet about impending and ongoing operations so as not to jeopardize them.”

Wednesday’s military casualties added to the list of six officers of the Nigerian Army that have lost their lives to terrorists in the axis within one week.

Last Friday, terrorists killed five soldiers and a captain in some villages — Roro, Karaga and Rumace — in Bassa ward in Allawa district.

Local sources said as the soldiers prepared to leave the garrison town of Allawa, the residents and other refugees also fled to other places. (Premium Times)