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NAF investigates bombing of civilians in Yobe

The Nigerian Airforce has begun an investigation into the alleged bombing of civilian settlements during one of its operations along the Kamadougou Yobe River line, Yobe state.

NAF said it received the “unfortunate” reports alleging that some civilians were erroneously killed while others were injured during the operation.

According to a statement issued by Edward Gabkwet, director of Public Relations and Information, explained that the initial release denying the involvement of NAF aircraft was based on the first report available to the Air Component which was subsequently forwarded to NAF headquarters that civilians were bombed as the aircraft detailed for the mission was not carrying bombs.

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“Following intelligence on Boko Haram/ISWAP movements along the Kamadougou Yobe River line, an aircraft from the Air Component of Operation Hadin Kai was detailed to respond to the suspected terrorists’ activities in the area along the Nigeria/Niger border at about 0600hrs on 15 September 2021.

“The aircraft while operating South of Kanama observed suspicious movement consistent with Boko Haram terrorist behaviour whenever a Jet aircraft was overhead. Accordingly, the pilot fired some probing shots. It is important to state that the area is well known for continuous Boko Haram /ISWAP activities.

“Unfortunately, reports reaching Nigerian Air Force (NAF) Headquarters alleged that some civilians were erroneously killed while others were injured,” the statement read.

“Initial release denying the involvement of NAF aircraft was based on the first report available to the Air Component which was subsequently forwarded to NAF headquarters that civilians were bombed as the aircraft detailed for the mission was not carrying bombs,” it further said.

“Therefore, a board of inquiry has been set up to thoroughly investigate the circumstances of the incident. Thank you,” the statement added.

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