Over 60,000 members of the Boko Haram terror group in Nigeria’s volatile northeastern region have surrendered to the government since July 2021, an army commander said on Sunday.
Maj. Gen. Christopher Musa, commander of a counter-terrorism operation in the country’s northeast region that, said there were 12,000 men among the surrendered terrorists in Maiduguri, Borno, the heartland of the decade-long terrorist acts.
“Over 60,000 insurgents and terrorists have surrendered. These include both combatants and non-combatants,” he said during an interview.
The commander also said about 30,000 children of surrendered terrorists are among the people kept at holding facilities in Borno as part of the government’s program for deradicalization and reintegration of repentant terrorists.
He welcomed the surrender of terrorists, saying it reduces their fighting population.
“What they (terrorists) are trying to do is to produce a generation of terrorists by making their women bear many children,” he said.
Musa, however, said the military will continue its operation against terrorists in the rural area.
Nigeria faces nearly 13 years of terrorism by Boko Haram and its splitter group, Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), in the northern region and parts of the country, with a recent attack on June 5 killing at least 40 worshipers at a church in southwest Ondo state.
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