Just In: Owo Attack: Two more attackers arrested – Says Official

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The Nigerian military says it has arrested two more assailants that carried out the attack on St Francis Xavier Church, Owo, Ondo State, on 5 June.

The attack left over 40 worshippers dead while scores of others sustained different injuries.

The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Lucky Irabor, on Tuesday during an interaction with some media executives disclosed that four of the attackers had been arrested.

Mr Irabor, a general, who said the arrest was made possible through a combined operation with the SSS personnel, named those arrested as Idris Abdulmalik Omeiza (a.k.a Bin Malik), Momoh Otohu Abubakar, Aliyu Yusuf Itopa and Auwal Ishaq Onimisi.

The defence chief said the attackers, who have links with ISWAP terrorist group, were arrested on 1 August at Eika, Okehi Local Government Area of Kogi State.

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Barely a few hours after the announcement of the arrest of four of the attackers by the CDS, two more arrests have also been made.

A statement by the Director of Defence Information, Jimmy Akpor, Thursday, said the arrest was carried out at Omialafara (Omulafa), Ose LGA, Ondo State 9 August.

According to the statement, those arrested were Al-Qasim Idris and Abdulhaleem Idris.

“It is instructive to note that Abdulhaleem, alongside other high profile ISWAP commanders, had also previously coordinated attacks on military targets in Okene, Okene LGA, Kogi State resulting in casualties, a part of the statement noted.

Mr Akpor, a major general, noted the arrests were made through a collaborative effort by military and SSS personnel.

Read the full statement below:

Recall that the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Lucky Irabor, during his parley with media executives and editors yesterday, Tuesday 9 August 2022, informed of the arrest of 4 terrorists among those who carried out the attack on St Francis Catholic Church, Owo on 5 June 2022. They were arrested through a combined operation by military and DSS personnel at Eika, Okehi LGA, Kogi State on 1 August 2022. Those arrested include Idris Abdulmalik Omeiza (a.k.a Bin Malik), Momoh Otohu Abubakar, Aliyu Yusuf Itopa and Auwal Ishaq Onimisi.

Barely few hours after the disclosure by the CDS of the arrest of 4 of the Owo Catholic Church attackers, 2 additional ISWAP terrorists, who were also connected to the attack on the church were apprehended at Omialafara (Omulafa), Ose LGA, Ondo State yesterday, 9 August 2022.

The arrests were made through the collaborative effort by military and DSS personnel. The suspects are Al-Qasim Idris and Abdulhaleem Idris.

It is instructive to note that Abdulhaleem, alongside other high profile ISWAP commanders, had also previously coordinated attacks on military targets in Okene, Okene LGA, Kogi State resulting in casualties.

It is the avowed commitment of the leadership of the military, Nigeria Police, DSS and other security agencies to work in synergy to enthrone peace and security all over the country.

This is due to the need for collaboration as an essential requirement to successfully deal with the existential asymmetric threats currently bedeviling our dear nation, Nigeria.

JIMMY AKPOR
Major General
Director Defence Information
10 August 2022

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