A voice was heard saying most of the terrorists were not more than fifteen years old and some looked like foreigners.
The text embedded in the video reads “Bandits killed after gun battle with army in Kundu along Zungeru Tegina road.”
This comes after a recent attack on troops and the crash of a Nigerian Air Force helicopter.
Verification: In a bid to verify the authenticity of the video, Daily Trust on Sunday carried out a search using the InVid video verification tool and the result showed that the video is an old clip from 2021 when Nigerian troops killed Islamic State’s West Africa Province (ISWAP) commanders and destroyed their training bases at Lake Chad.
Background: Earlier this month, there were reports of no fewer than 50 bandits killed with at least 20 soldiers dead in a clash in Kundu village near Zungeru in Wushishi, Niger State.
It was learnt that seven other soldiers and five vigilantes sustained varying degrees of gunshot injuries.
Sources said the soldiers were on their way to some communities recently attacked by bandits in Wushishi Local Government Area.
The bandits invaded several villages in the area, forcing dozens of farmers to flee to Wushishi and Zungeru.
Another source said the bandits were crossing the Zungeru-Tegina Road with a large number of cattle around Kundu village in Rafi Local Government Area “when they came in contact with the military personnel drafted to the area and began an exchange of fire, leading to the death of the soldiers.”
However, NAF spokesperson, Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet, in a statement said the MI-171 Helicopter on a casualty evacuation mission crashed at about 1pm near Chukuba Village in Niger State on August 14, 2023.
There were other reports that the helicopter was shot down by non-state actors and that the pilot died. This could not be independently confirmed by Daily Trust.
Gabkwet explained that the aircraft had departed Zungeru Primary School enroute to Kaduna, but was later discovered to have crashed near Chukuba Village in Shiroro LGA.
He also did not state whether or not there were casualties.
Gabkwet also said efforts were still ongoing to rescue the crew and passengers on board the helicopter and said preliminary investigations had commenced to determine the probable cause of the crash.
However, after the crew members were confirmed dead, Nigeria’s Air Force chief visited the families of the deceased and assured they would never abandon them.
Conclusion: Based on our investigation, Daily Trust on Sunday can confirm that bandits were killed by the Nigerian military in a recent clash in Niger State but the video used to accompany the claim is misleading.