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Nigerian Troops Capture Anti-aircraft Guns, Improvised Armoured Vehicle from ISWAP

The attack on Askira is part of a trend of recent attacks targeting security forces and communities, following the withdrawal of the rainy season.

Nigerian troops on Saturday, Nov. 13, captured anti-aircraft guns and an improvised armoured carrier from Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) during an encounter in Askira Uba. 

According to a statement on Nov. 13 from army Spokesperson General Onyema Nwachukwu, the troops were supported by two A-29 and five Alpha jets during the fierce encounter with the army destroying nine gun trucks and one APC. 

He said a senior officer, Brigadier General Dzarma Zirkusu and three soldiers were killed as they reinforced a counter offensive against the terrorists, and successfully defended the location.

The captured improvised carrier used for moving fighters to frontline locations bears resemblance with a carrier that appeared in ISWAP photos released on Nov. 3, showing militants attacking security forces in Damboa.

The troops also seized one gun truck and the improvised armoured carrier fabricated using armour from a previously captured Nigerian Army Panhard VBL Recce vehicle. 

Unofficial photos from the encounter showed weapons seized from ISWAP insurgents including AK type rifles, one machine gun and two heavy machine guns; Type 85 and W85 variants. 

ISWAP had earlier conducted a raid in Askira with insurgents destroying a telecommunication mast, buildings and vehicles and looted food items in shops. 

The terror group also targeted the reinforcements contingent from Chibok resulting in the death of an Army Brigadier General, Dzarma Zirkusu and three soldiers. 

In June, another improvised armoured carrier built on what appeared to be a Toyota chassis showed up in an ISWAP photo set of an attack in the Gujba area of Yobe State. 

HumAngle in an earlier report examined ISWAP’s Transport Inventory and engineering Capacities that feeds its campaign of terror in northeastern Nigeria. 

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Murtala Abdullahi

Abdullahi Murtala is a researcher and reporter. His expertise is in conflict reporting, climate and environmental justice, and charting the security trends in Nigeria and the Lake Chad region. He founded the Goro Initiative and contributes to dialogues, publications and think-tanks that report on climate change and human security. He tweets via @murtalaibin

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