There was panic in Orlu and Orsu Local Government Areas of Imo State on Thursday as the Nigerian military began operations in search of the camps occupied by the personnel of Eastern Security Network linked with Indigenous People of Biafra.
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.
It was gathered that the operation had caused serious panic in the areas.
An indigene of Uda Orsuihiteukwa in the Orlu Local Government Area told said hat though no indigene was shot by the military, the operation was causing serious panic in the area.
He said, “Situation now calm in Udah, Orsuihiteukwa. Military helicopters have left my area a while ago after the surveillance mission. All security vans have left the Udah community for their respective bases.
“Civilians were not in any way harassed in the exercise. No casualties. The invasion may have been warranted by intelligence reports.
“The leaders and office bearers from Orlu zone should address this security instability in our zone now. This is not healthy for the progress and advancement of the biggest senatorial zone in Nigeria.”
It was learnt that there is a heavy presence of soldiers in Orlu, where the military and ESN officials clashed on January 25.