The Nigerian Army confirmed on Saturday that a combined team of security agents led by its troops raided the operational headquarters of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and Eastern Security Network (ESN) in Awomama Village, Oru East local government area of Imo State.
The Army Director of Public Relations, Brig. Gen. Mohammed Yerima, who disclosed this in a statement in Abuja, however, said four security agents died in the operation.
At least seven people suspected militia men including one Commander Ikonson were killed when security agents raided the group’s hideout on Saturday morning.
Yerima said: “The early morning raid by troops of Nigerian Army, Nigerian Police Intelligence Response Team (IRT) and operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) was launched in the early hours of Saturday, April 24, 2021, following a detailed intelligence report on the location of the terrorists’ operational headquarters and the movement of the overall Commander popularly known as Ikonson Commander.
“The IRT and DSS teams along with troops of 82 Division of the Nigerian Army have been on the trail of the terror group since the unfortunate attacks on the Imo State Police Command and the Owerri Correctional Center on April 5, 2021.
“The said Ikonson Commander who was the mastermind of those attacks in addition to multiple attacks in the South-East and South-South regions, was neutralised along with six of his top Commanders.
“The joint intelligence team had earlier interviewed several arrested IPOB/ESN terrorists in connection with the April 5 attacks and they all confessed that Ikonson Commander who was named as Vice- President by their leader, Nnamdi Kanu, was the one that mobilized men and resources as well as ordered and orchestrated the attacks on Owerri.
“They equally revealed that Ikonson was responsible for many other attacks on police stations across the two geopolitical zones.
“The intelligence team later tracked the IPOB/ESN top leader to his exact location in Awomama village where he (Ikonson) and his Commanders were hibernating and plotting dastardly acts against the Nigerian state.
“On noticing the presence of the joint operations team, IPOB/ESN terrorists brought heavy volume of fire on the raiding team who swiftly responded and overwhelmed them with superior fire power that neutralised Ikonson and six of his top Commanders.
“Sadly however, a Second Lieutenant and three IRT operatives paid the supreme price in the firefight that ensued.
“The four officers who fought gallantly have already been evacuated to a military facility in Owerri.
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