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NAF airstrikes destroy illegal oil refining sites in Imo

The Nigerian Air Force, NAF, has said that the Air Component of Operation Delta Safe successfully destroyed two illegal refining sites situated along the banks of Imo River.

NAF’s director, Public Relations and Information, Edward Gabkwet, in a statement on Sunday, June 9, 2024, in Abuja, said the operation was carried out on Saturday.

Gabkwet said the strike was conducted barely hours after the Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal Hasan Abubakar, had discussions with Gov. Alex Otti of Abia on plans to set up a NAF Base in the state.

He said the illegal sites were located near Obiaku and in close proximity to the Imo-Abia-Rivers borders.

According to him, the sites consist of two tanks and a reservoir in one location and three tanks and two reservoirs in another location along the Imo Riverbank.

“Observing that these sites were active, authorisation was sought and received for air strikes on the targets. Subsequently, air strikes by the Air Component of Operation Delta Safe were conducted, which destroyed the 2 sites as well as the surface tanks and reservoirs,” he said.

“Building on these successes, air operations under Operation Delta Safe, will be intensified, especially within the areas of interest, as part of efforts to curtail the activities of criminal elements.

“The successes recorded in destroying these IRS bring to fore the necessity of a NAF Base in Abia, which Gov. Otti and Air Marshal Abubakar both agreed was long overdue,” he said.

Mr Gabkwet said that NAF’s continued efforts in all ongoing operations underscored its commitment to maintaining aerial dominance over the Nigerian skies, while collaborating with surface forces towards the safety and security of Nigerian citizens.

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