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Nigerian govt negotiates with bandits, bombs Orlu Town

….Orlu a densely populated town not forest

•Military confirms aerial survey but said civilians not being harassed

As the Nigerian government delegation led by the mavrick cleric, Gumi to negotiate with the bandits that kidapped the students of Kagara Government Science Secondary School, Niger State; concludes negotiations with the terrorists, Nigerians have reacted to the alleged Nigerian Military’s aerial bombardment of parts of Orlu Town, the second largest town in Imo State, South East Nigeria.

The alleged airstrikes, which commenced on Thursday afternoon, is believed to be part of the military’s efforts at dislodging operatives of the Eastern Security Network (ESN) which it clashed with a few weeks ago.

Equally important, the ESN operatives are believed to have strongholds and camps in forests in Orlu.

Meanwhile, footages circulated on social media showed fighter aircrafts combing Orlu and conducting air raids on identified targets; leading to widespread panic and anxiety among residents of the largely peaceful town. In January, the Army and members of the ESN were involved in a bloody clash. Also, four soldiers from the Obinze barracks were reportedly killed.

Subsequently, the Army had descended on the town; with reports claiming that many lives were lost in the clampdown that followed.

Read also: ESN: Panic as Nigerian Military Deploys Soldiers, Helicopters to Orlu

However, the tension and bloody clash had been preceded by the deployment of combat helicopters, gun trucks, and soldiers by the Nigerian Army to comb forests in some states in the South East where the operatives of the ESN, a milita unit launched by Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) were understood to be camping.

World: Banditry is a type of organized crime…
Zamfara state Gov Bello: not all bandits are criminals 
This is why helicopters are not flying over terrorist territory!
A government that sides with terrorists but terrorises it’s citizens  #Orlu #EndBadGoveranceInNigeria

— Dj Switch (@dj_switchaholic) February 18, 2021
Accordingly, the airstrikes and raids conducted by the Nigerian military today has ignited some intense reactions; with reports claiming that a number of civilian casualties had been recorded in the bombardment. In a number of videos posted on social media by concerned residents; the sounds of automatic rifle fire and airstrikes could be heard.

Consequently, Nigerians had taken to the micro-blogging site, Twitter, to condemn the actions of the military; specifically, the toll on innocent lives that the air raids would have potentially had. Furthermore, a section of commentators has called for an end to the military action; even as they implored the authorities to pull out the Nigerian Army from Orlu.

In addition, some comments have referenced the recent abduction of students by bandits in the North; noting that the government had not deployed deadly force against the criminal elements.

But Global Sentinel had reported the army spokesperson of the 34 artillery Brigade, Obinze, Owerri, Imo state, Babatunde Zubairu, who confirmed the operation, said the locals were not being harassed.

He confirmed the deployment of helicopters and other military gadgets in the operations.

The army spokesperson said that the operation was an offshoot of military intelligence.

Here are some of the reactions on Twitter here.

I served in Ideato North, close to Orlu which was our go to town when we wanted to groove in our vicinity. To think the Nigerian military will be using air power in a town that crowded and busy should amount to a crime against humanity. Wetin Igbo people do these brutes abeg

— Akwa Ibom Hypeman (@romeocza) February 18, 2021
Instead of Nigerian military to pursue the terrorists that abducted school children in Niger State they are unleashing terror in Orlu like the terrorists did in Kagara?

— Aisha Yesufu (@AishaYesufu) February 18, 2021
In Orlu? Not sambisa, not in katsina, not in Zamfara, not in Niger State, nor in any of the hotbeds of terrorism but in Orlu?

— Aisha Yesufu (@AishaYesufu) February 18, 2021
How does it make sense to send soldiers, helicopters and artillery to Orlu because of Eastern Security Network that do not kill or abduct Nigerians, and then send a delegation to negotiate with killer herdsmen, bandits and other terrorists that kill Nigerians? #BuhariTormentor

— Reno Omokri (@renoomokri) February 18, 2021
The Defence Minister himself told Nigerians not to be cowards, and to face herdsmen and bandits. So, why send troops, artillery and helicopters to Orlu to neutralise ESN volunteers. ESN is doing exactly what the minister said. They are resisting herdsmen/bandits#BuhariTormentor

— Reno Omokri (@renoomokri) February 18, 2021
I have told you that the Nigerian Military is part of a tribal armed militia.

Orlu is undergoing airstrikes. Locals in the middle belt would speak of military helicopter dropping supplies in the Bush or circling their villages right before attacks.

— Mama Paul the Animator (@YarKafanchan) February 18, 2021
ORLU in IMO state is not a forest. It’s an urban settlement.

I do not understand what the Nigerian military is doing there…

It is the second largest city in IMO state after Owerri.

This is war and nothing short of it!
The FG has declared war on Nigerians…

—  (@DoctorEmto) February 18, 2021
Nigeria Military is commiting war crimes at Orlu. Nigeria has declared war in Orlu Imo State. Nigerian Armed Forces are firing rockets in Orlu.

They said they are flushing out ESN, but how would you flush out ESN by bombing everything?

Please retweet aggressively

— Mazi @FestusGreen  (@FestusGreen) February 18, 2021
The tale of two countries: In Orlu, IMO state, the @MBuhari junta is suddenly alive killing civilians, aerially bombarding #ESN members but ironically in #Kagara , Niger state where bandits abducted school boys, negotiators are peacefully negotiating ransom! #occupyNigeria

— Omoyele Sowore (@YeleSowore) February 18, 2021
Why is the news of the Nigerian Army carrying out air strikes in Orlu not making major headlines yet? Can someone explain to me what the people of Orlu did to wake up in the morning to the sound of Mi-35 helicopters opening fire on them?

— ULOMA (@ulxma) February 18, 2021
It takes a special type of wickedness to bomb Civilians in Orlu..

A week after the Nigerian government held peace meetings with Sahelian terrorists known as ” bandits”..

This is full scale ethnic cleansing..

— William (@_SirWilliam_) February 18, 2021
The Nigerian Military for the past 20 years has committed crimes against humanity in the South South & South East..

This is the real Nigeria for many of us, and I don’t want to be part of this colonial project anymore.

Amnesty for Terrorists but Bombs for Orlu .

— William (@_SirWilliam_) February 18, 2021
In Nigeria, the people on the left are known as #Bandits while those on the right are called Terrorists. #Orlu

— Kamanụ Ọzụzụ (@kamanuozuzu) February 18, 2021
Declared Opening of the Lekki Tollgate without holding anyone accountable for the #EndSARS killings, Launched air strikes in a civilian territory like Orlu under the guise of killing Herdsmen.
I’m fully convinced this is a Military government!!!

— Victor Babatunde (@vhic_tore) February 18, 2021
The bombing & killing of innocent men, women & children in Orlu, Anambra state by soldiers of the Nig. Army is totally & completely unacceptable & I wholeheartedly condemn it. Shedding innocent blood is not the way forward & I call on the Nigerian Army to show restraint.

— Femi Fani-Kayode (@realFFK) February 18, 2021
Too obvious that Nigeria governments are behind boko haram, bandits and fulani herdsmen. I don’t know how a sane government will channel their power more on innocent people in Orlu than the terrorists in sambisa forest.

Just How?

— IFA FUNSHO (@funshographix) February 18, 2021
Nigerian government deployed soldiers to Orlu to attack ESN and innocent Orlu Community, Imo State, but sent Northern Governors and Sheik Gumi to dialogue with Fulani terrorists and killer herdsmen.

— Oluchi Christy (@oluchristty) February 18, 2021
I’m too irritated to talk about Orlu, So I will maintain the loud silence to uphold my cool.

Obviously, 3 million lives are not enough for Nigerian state!

The only reason, I don’t believe in peaceful agitation in Nigeria.

Never again!

— Anambra 1st son (@UchePOkoye) February 18, 2021
Have ESN been known to abduct, kill or rape? How many helicopters are searching for the abducted Kagara boys? How many troops are in Katsina forests? None, to the best of my knowledge. @MBuhari is too busy deploying them in Orlu, where no one has been abducted! #BuhariTormentor

— Reno Omokri (@renoomokri) February 18, 2021
Indeed,  the development in Niger State, where scores of students are currently held captive.

Specifically, the students and some staff were abducted from Government Science Secondary School, Kagara. Also, a student was confirmed killed during the raid.

Copied from Globalsentinel

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