Troops of the Operation Delta Safe, on Thursday, bombed a militant camp at Okosugbene Creek, along Burutu-Warri River, near Burutu, Delta State, with two fighter jets and about seven gun boats, leaving some militants dead.
The raid on the militant camp located at Lapala village, which took place at about 6.00 am, caught the militants unawares and caused tension among riverine dwellers as they all scampered at the sound of heavy gunshots.
Sources however say the camp was an abandoned militant camp belonging to the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, MEND, while others claim that it was occupied by sea pirates.
Confirming the attack, a youth leader from Burutu community, said he heard several gunshots on Thursday morning and later discovered that the military had invaded the gathering of suspected militants, who had converged on the community in what could be likened to a militant camp.
Also, a senior operative of the Department of State Security, DSS, confirmed the raid saying there were intelligence reports that suspected militants are converging on the area and troops from the Operation Safe Delta were drafted to engage the militants and dislodge the camp located at an area known as 9000 Junction.
Earlier in the month, President Muhammadu Buhari inaugurated a committee led by a retired Army chief – Lt Gen Theophilus Danjuma – with the mandate to recover arms from the militants and end the agitation in the region.
Danjuma was Chief of Army Staff between July 1975 and October 1979 and in line with this present administration’s mantra, is now heading the Niger Delta Riverine Protection Programme to end the continued spate of bombings in the oil-rich region of the country by agitators.