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Nigerian Army Chief and 10 Other peoples Killed in Plane Crash

The incident occurred as the plane was landing at Kaduna airport ‘due to inclement weather’, the army says.

The highest ranking commander of the Nigerian army, Lieutenant General Ibrahim Attahiru, and other military officers were killed when their plane crashed in the north of the country, according to authorities.

Friday's incident occurred "due to inclement weather" when the plane was landing at Kaduna International Airport, the armed forces said in a statement, adding that the accident "claimed the lives of 10 other officers, including the crew." .
No immediate information was provided on what may have caused the plane crash, but Brigadier General Mohammed Yerima said more details would be released soon. The names of the other military officers who died were not made public.
President Muhammadu Buhari appointed the Attahiru Army Chief of Staff in January as part of a reorganization of the military high command to better combat violence, including the more than a decade-long battle against the armed group Boko Haram.

Buhari, a former general first elected in 2015, has come under increasing pressure from allies and critics for his government's handling of the country's growing security problems.

In a statement, the president said that the accident "was a fatal blow to our belly, at a time when our armed forces are poised to end the security challenges facing the country."
The US diplomatic mission in Nigeria called Attahiru's death "a tremendous loss for Nigeria" on Twitter, adding: "We join Nigerians in mourning the tragic loss of life from today's plane crash."

The Nigerian military has been fighting Boko Haram in the northeast since 2009, in a conflict that has left more than 40,000 dead and some two million displaced.

Attahiru was killed when reports emerged that Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau had been seriously injured or possibly killed after clashes with a rival faction.

The army chief was once in charge of leading the front-line offensive against Shekau fighters in the northeast in 2017.

Local intelligence sources said Shekau had been seriously injured this week when the ISIL-linked Islamic State in West Africa province (ISWAP) attacked his stronghold in the Sambisa forest in the northeastern state of Borno. Sources said Shekau was injured when he shot himself to try to evade capture.

The death of the Boko Haram leader has been reported several times since the conflict began, but reappeared later.

The Nigerian military has said it was still investigating the reports and that neither ISWAP nor Boko Haram had issued any statements about the Sambisa attack or the whereabouts of Shekau.
 

Written by saadghufran25

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