The Department of State Security (DSS) on Friday confirmed it arrested 12 suspected Boko Haram members in an early morning raid at an uncompleted building in Abuja.
The police have also confirmed that seven persons were killed in the shootout.
A statement issued by Marilyn Ogar, the spokesperson of the department, said the suspects were arrested during a joint security operation at about 3 a.m. in a building located behind the Apo National Assembly Quarters.
Many federal lawmakers including the Senate President, David Mark, reside in the legislative quarters.
According to the statement, the operation followed information obtained from two Boko Haram elements, Kamal Abdullahi and Mohammed Adamu, who had earlier been arrested for terrorist activities.
“They led the security team to the uncompleted building where arms were purported to have been buried underground.
“No sooner had the team commenced digging for the arms than they came under heavy gunfire attack by other Boko Haram elements within the area,’’ the statement read.
The statement said that the security team responded immediately.
“As a result, some persons were injured while 12 others were arrested in connection with the incident and are making useful statements,’’ it said.
It said that normalcy had returned to the area, and urged the public to go about their normal businesses as appropriate security measures had been put in place to ensure safety.
The statement restated the need for Nigerians to be vigilant and to promptly report suspicious activities to security agencies.
It added that national security must remain the collective responsibility of all.
The statement was however silent on the number of people that died in the raid with residents of the area saying four people were killed and pictures of the victims circulated on social media.
The police, which was obviously, not carried along in the raid, initially said they could not confirm the casualty.
“We don’t have any update on it for now, yes we are aware of the incident and we are investigating the matter for now.
“I honestly cannot give you an exact number of people dead or injured now because I don’t want to create room for speculations.” Altine Daniel, the Abuja police spokeswoman, said.
But the Force later told the News Agency of Nigeria that seven people were killed.
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