Chad airstrikes against Boko Haram not on our territory — Nigerian Military

Nigerian Air Force fighter jet
Nigerian Air Force fighter jet

Nigeria has denied claims that Chad conducted air strikes on Nigerian soil, against jihadist sect, Boko Haram.

The Defence Headquarters on Thursday said the report was incorrect.

The denial followed a statement by Chad’s military that it carried out a series of air strikes against Boko Haram bases in Nigeria in retaliation for twin suicide bombings on Tuesday in its capital, N’Djamena.

The attack killed at least 34 people, Reuters news agency reported.

Chad said the strikes had caused heavy human and material damage to six of the Islamist militants’ bases, according to Reuters.

But the Nigerian military said in a statement by the Director of Defence Information, Chris Olukolade, a Major General, that the Nigerian Air force surveillance mission identified targets tagged, Camp 6, around Bosso town which is not within Nigerian territory, “and alerted the partners, accordingly”.

Mr. Olukolade said the places reported to have been struck by the Chadians were therefore most likely to be in Niger Republic and not Nigeria as widely reported in the international media.

“Although the terms of the multilateral and bilateral understanding with partners in the war against terror allow some degree of hot pursuit against the terrorists, the territory of Nigeria has not been violated as insinuated in the reports circulated in some foreign media,” he said.

Mr. Olukolade said the Nigerian military would continue to cooperate with partners in the mission to exterminate or contain terrorists strictly in conformity with existing terms of the Concept of Operation at strategic, operational or tactical levels.

He said it was however important that issues were “accurately reported while avoiding misleading or unnecessary sensationalism from any quarter”.

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