Abducted Soldiers, Civilians Have Been Rescued From Kidnappers Den

A suspected kidnappers den operated by alleged militants has been uncovered by men of the Nigerian army following a raid to rescue two soldiers who were abducted by gunmen. 

Premium Times reports that the rescue operation was carried out by soldiers attached to the Joint Military Task Force in the Niger Delta, codenamed Operation Delta Safe (OPDS). Spokesperson for the OPDS, Major Ibrahim Abdullahi, in a statement on Thursday, September 21, disclosed that the operation was carried out on Monday, September 18, after troops received a report that two of their colleagues had been kidnapped by suspected militants. 

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He said: “Troops were immediately mobilised, swung into action and discovered a militant camp with several shrines in a forest at Obiozimini Community in Rivers State. 

“On approach, the suspected militants\cultists opened fire on the troops who subsequently engaged them with superior fire power leading to casualties on the side of suspected kidnappers while others escaped with various degrees of gunshot wounds into an adjoining forest. “The operation successfully rescued the 2 abducted personnel.” 

Abdullahi stated that after the hoodlums were dislodged from their hideout, the soldiers discovered four more civilians that were earlier kidnapped including a lady. “The camp and shrines were subsequently destroyed while the rescued victims were evacuated to one of our medical facilities in the area," he said. 

The spokesperson said soldiers were on the trail of the gunmen who fled into the forest in order to bring them to justice. In another news report, suspected kidnappers and killers of Rev. Fr. Cyriacus Onunkwo, a Catholic priest, have been arrested, Punch reports.

The cleric was kidnapped by some gunmen in Orlu, Imo state in his car on Friday, September 1. Onunkwo was said to be returning home to organise the funeral of his father when he was abducted at gunpoint. Following a manhunt, the priest's body was discovered in a bush at Omuma village in Orlu east local government area of Imo state on Saturday, September 2.