Alpha and F-17Ni jets of the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) in a surprise night attack on Monday hit several targets and camps of the Boko Haram in Goni Kurmi inside Sambisa General Area. The bombing was part of Operation Forest Storm which was to eliminate retreating elements of Boko Haram fighters.
The NAF released a video of the operation which lasted for one minute and twenty-two seconds showing at least two F-7Ni jets and one Alpha jet in a series of maneuvers and target bombings in Goni Kurmi. The Air Force Director of Public Relations and Information (DOPRI), Group Captain Ayodele Famuyiwa told our correspondent in Abuja that the operation was targeted at Boko Haram logistics including ammunition, fuel depots, vehicle clusters and solar panels.
Continuous Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR), by the NAF established that Boko Haram fighters try to relocate frequently to avoid being hit in the Air Force bombing campaigns on their locations.
Their position is more compounded by the renewed operations of the Multi National Joint Task Force (MNJTF) in northern Borno , the NAF observed that some elements of the terrorists groups began to relocate back to southern Borno in the Sambisa Forest necessitating Operation Forest Storm.
Group Captain Famuyiwa said targets in the bombings were not bombed arbitrarily but were carefully selected after a determination has been reached from reports of ISR .
“Yes, there was impact assessment carried out. Remember targets were not just bombed arbitrarily but carefully selected. Before and after the strike there were ISR missions carried out. Post-strike ISR missions, otherwise called Battle Damage Assessment (BDA) were also conducted at the end of the 1-week operation to be sure the objectives of the operations were achieved. In this case, this has to do with degree of success achieved with respect to the destruction of the selected targets which include new Boko Haram Terrorist (BHT) camps and logistics bases,” he said.
When pressed further on the number and hierarchy of the casualty he said though there was no information about any specific Boko Haram leader, but such should be expected.
“There are no information as to whether specific BHT leader was hit or not. Of course, it should be expected that there would have been some key individuals among those killed but no information about who they are.”