PAN AFRICAN NEWS AGENCY
The Nigerian Defence Headquarters (DHQ) Thursday said that the Nigerian military has deployed over 500 officers and men to the current African International Support Mission to Mali (AFISMA).
It has also deployed two Dassault-Breguet Dornier Alpha fighter jets and two Mi-35 helicopters for the Malian operation. In addition, the Nigerian Contingent Air Component has deployed the C-130 Hercules transport and the medium carrier, the G222 for the operation.
Nigeria had pledged a total of 1,200
troops for the AFISMA, comprising a
Nigerian Army battalion plus strength of
900 troops and Nigerian Air Force
strength of 300 troops. The Nigerian Air Force air component,which has deployed its full strength of pledged 300 troops, is stationed in Niamey, Niger Republic.
Director of Defence Information, Col. Mohammed Yerima, said in a statement in Abuja Thursday that the Nigerian contingent currently has a Company strength of 138 men (all ranks) stationed in the city of Banamba, Mali. Col. Yerima stated that the AFISMA Headquarters in Bamako is manned by 17 Nigerian personnel while 24 personnel are currently stationed at the transit camp.
In addition, a Signal Squadron of 61
personnel is currently deployed. The Defence spokesman said that “the
remaining troops and equipment will be
deployed in due course.
Also expected to deploy is a contingent of 140 Nigeria Police personnel who are already on standby.”