Nigerian soldiers engaged in the Lafiya Dole counterinsurgency operation in the North-east said troops on Saturday arrested 407 persons who are either Boko Haram fighters or members of their families hiding on the islands of the Lake Chad.
The arrests were made following a sustained air and ground coordinated offensive targeting locations of the insurgents around the various islands.
The arrest turns out to be biggest harvest of Boko Haram fighters by the military in recent times.
The arrested persons comprised 167 active Boko Haram fighters, 67 women and 173 children who were confirmed wives and kids of the insurgents.
The military said many of the insurgents were also killed during the coordinated raids on the island.
This was contained in a statement issued by the spokesman of the Operation Lafiya Dole, Onyema Nwachukwu.
Mr. Nwachukwu, a colonel, who is Deputy Director Army Public Relations, said 57 insurgents were arrested during a seperate operation on another location in the troubled sub-region.
He said within the past weeks, 15 other insurgents had surrendered to Nigeria troops.
“Our heartfelt sympathy and condolences go to families and relations of troops as well as civilians who paid the supreme price in the encounters and callous suicide bomb and Improvised Explosive Device (IED) attacks by the terrorists.
“While troops continue relentlessly in the ongoing offensive to decisively rid the north east hinterlands of insurgents, members of the public are implored to be more security conscious and vigilant in their homes, communities, places of worship , markets and other places of business to identify strange persons as well as any suspicious activity and promptly report same to security agencies. They are also urged to remember to “Say something, if you see something,” the statement added.