The Nigerian Army said troops on Monday foiled an attempt by members of the pro-Biafra group, IPOB, to abduct some medical doctors and nurses in Imo State, Nigeria’s South-east.
The army spokesperson, Onyema Nwachukwu, disclosed this in a statement on Tuesday.
Mr Nwachukwu, a brigadier-general, said the medical personnel, under the auspices of Doctors On The Move Africa, were providing free medical care to residents of Amucha community in Njaba Local Government Area of Imo.
“The troops in conjunction with the Nigerian Air Force, 211 Quick Response Group and the Nigerian Police on receipt of actionable intelligence on the criminal plot, swiftly moved in and rescued the medical team.
“The troops afterwards went after the hoodlums and made contact with them at Amauju, Isu Local Government Area of Imo where they were found enforcing the illegal sit at home order.
“In the firefight that ensued, one of the criminals was neutralised, while the others took to their heels and the medical team escorted to a safe location.
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“One of the criminals who had escaped with gunshot wounds was later apprehended by the local vigilante and handed over to the police,” Mr Nwachukwu said.
He said the troops recovered one pump-action shotgun, five live cartridges, one Lexus 300 XR SUV and a mobile phone.
Agitation for an independent republic, Biafra, which IPOB is championing, has led to several killings and destruction in the South-east.
IPOB leader, Nnamdi Kanu, is in detention in Abuja where he is standing trial over alleged treason.
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