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70 Soldiers killed in Boko Haram ambush in Alargano Borno State

In what is unprecedented in Nigeria’s recent war against terrorists in Northeast region, over 70 soldiers of the Army were wiped out in the deadliest attack by the Boko Haram terrorist group in Alargano, near Gorgi village in Borno State.

The over 70 soldiers were killed in an ambush on their convoy on Monday as the terrorists fired rocket-propelled grenades at a lorry carrying the troops.

A source said that “it was a huge loss, at least 70 soldiers have perished in the ambush. The terrorists specifically targeted a truck loaded with soldiers with RPGs and incinerated the vehicle, killing all on board. So far, 70 bodies have been recovered but the toll is certainly more than that as rescue operation is still underway.”

In addition to the dead, several soldiers were injured while others were taken captive by the jihadists.

As is usual with the military in recent times, none of their Spokespersons were willing to speak on the attack or the casualties.

The convoy had left the epicentre of the terrorist attack, Maiduguri, and were on their way to launch an offensive on a camp belonging to terrorists affiliated to the Islamic State of West Africa (ISWAP) in the area when they were ambushed. ISWAP is a breakaway faction of the terrorist group, Boko Haram.

Alargano is reputed to be the “spiritual” base of Boko Haram terrorists and was captured from the terrorists in late March 2016 after a 10-day siege.

The soldiers who were killed in the ambush belong to 120 and 121 Battalion, Artillery units and Sector 2 and were on a special operation called Operation Ayiso Tamonuma.

A source said that the Operation Ayiso Tamonuma troops had commenced advance into Alagarno general area on Sunday before running into the first ambush by Boko Haram terrorists. Luckily, no soldier was killed in the first attack “but few of the troopers were injured. The troops were able to fight back and got out of the ambush situation and then harboured near a place called Gorge on 22nd March 2020.”

The source stated that the troops came under yet another attack on Monday after they had reorganised to proceed to advance towards Alagarno.

Said the source: “They commenced movement from harbour area ahead of Gorge on Monday and the Boko Haram terrorists came to stage yet another attack from the rear of the troop’s convoy hitting their Multi Barrel Rocket Launcher (MBRL) and Sinotruck otherwise called ‘yellow-bucket’ that was fully loaded with soldiers. The Boko Haram terrorist utilised their Rocket-Propelled Grenade (RPG) firepower and other support weapons on the vehicles which inflicted heavy casualties on the troops, wiping out the entire artillery troop.”

The source also noted that some of the soldiers Killed In Action (KIA) were burnt beyond recognition and some of the soldiers who survived with injuries were evacuated to hospitals in Damaturu and Maiduguri for treatment.

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