By ODIMMEGWA JOHNPETER, Abuja
In furtherance of its clearance operations, on 2 July, 2017, the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) Component of Operation LAFIYA DOLE conducted an Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) mission of the Sambisa Forest, the former spiritual headquarters of the Boko Haram Terrorists (BHT). During the ISR mission, a gradual convergence of Boko Haram terrorists at some buildings in Alagarno Camp 1 was noticed. The sight of several solar panels on the rooftops of the buildings, and the obvious attempt to conceal the buildings, gave out the plans of the terrorists. A confirmatory ISR mission indicated that the structures were most likely a budding Command and Control facilities, which could also house High Value Targets.
Accordingly, on 3 July, 2017, the Air Component detailed three aircraft namely, two Alpha Jet and one F-7Ni aircraft, to conduct Air Interdiction strikes on the buildings in succession.
Subsequent Battle Damage Assessment revealed that the structures with the solar panels as well as other adjoining BHT structures were damaged. Furthermore, a suspected BHT technical vehicle, which was attempting to make a run from the vicinity, was struck by subsequent waves of attack.