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North-East: We're heading to final battle against Boko Haram – Buratai tells troops

By The Citizen
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The Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai, has described December as a month of decision and said that it was either the army succeeds in clearing the remnants of Boko Haram terrorists or it continues to live in perpetual circle of their atrocities in the North East.

This came as he reassured all troops of the intention to return them back to Barracks in 2017 on the condition of leaving behind a strong, highly mobile, effective and motivated force that will continue to do the good work that the army had already started.

In a message to the troops engaged in fight against Boko Haram, Tukur said the army must immediately begin to embark on final aggressive action and comprehensive sweep of the operational theatre with a view to ending the operation on a very high note.

'In this regard, no stone should be left unturned. I therefore call on all officers and soldiers to buckle up and ensure that remnants of Boko Haram terrorists are completely cleared,' he said.

The army boss reminded them that captured and surrendered Boko Haram terrorists must be treated humanely and fairly and in strict accordance with the provisions of International Humanitarian Law and Laws of Armed Conflict.

In doing so, he said the army must be prepared to enter all fortresses, camps, dens and enclaves of the Boko Haram to completely flush them out and dominate the areas to ensure they are not reoccupied.

He said in the message, 'I am sending to you all, the troops of Operation Lafiya Dole best wishes as the Yuletide period approaches. I commend you for your sacrifices, commitment, loyalty and courage in the service of our fatherland.

'I hope to be with you sometime this month to motivate and positively influence the ongoing operations.  This is with a view to having a colourful end of year and peaceful Yuletide in the North East and indeed Nigeria.

'I urge all commanders to plan and embark on effective patrols, raids, ambushes and deliberate attacks in conjunction with other services especially the Nigerian Air Force and Nigerian Navy to rescue all those abducted by the terrorists.

'I consequently, call on all troops to remain focused, disciplined, loyal, dedicated and patriotic to their duties and to Mr President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces Federal Republic of Nigeria.'