The Defence Headquarters has said that its personnel have not ascertained the true identities of some of the women and girls rescued from Sambisa forest by Nigerian troops. At a media briefing in Abuja on Thursday [April 30], the Director of Defence Information, Major General Chris Olukolade, said the rescued women and girls were still undergoing profiling to verify their identities.
“Until such comprehensive profiling is done, nobody can confirm whether they are among the Chibok girls or not,” Olukolade stated.
According to him, rescue operations were still ongoing and more hostages were being freed by troops. He continued: “Whoever they may be, the important thing is that Nigerians held captive under very severe and inhuman condition have been freed by our gallant troops.
“The joy and sense of hope being expressed by many Nigerians on hearing about the rescue operation is therefore understandable. We would like to reassure them that the momentum of this operation will be sustained until that Sambisa forest is comprehensively cleaned out and all Nigerians held captive within the bowels of the forest are rescued. There is great hope for the recovery of more hostages being held by the terrorists.
“Already, the dislodged and disorganized terrorists are in flight on different directions and running helter-skelter in the expansive forest. There is no longer any respite or sanctuary for them, they will be pursued and tracked down not minding the daunting challenges in the mission including hundreds of land mines and difficult terrain of the Sambisa forest.
“It should be noted however that the essence of this operation is not to kill everybody in sight. We encourage any of the combatants who are desirous to surrender to come out, as the forest will no more be tenable as a haven for their activities.
“In the same vein, innocent civilians among those in flight are also encouraged to report themselves to the troops. We will continue to treat civilians in the most professional and humane way. We thank all Nigerians for their continued prayers and support and assure them that never again shall forces of darkness reign supreme in our country.”
Below Are Images Released By The Military Of The 200 Girls And 93 Women Rescued From Sambisia:
Images via: SK Usman