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JUST IN: Five pilots, troops die in military aircraft crash

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Five crew members , including two pilots and three personnel of the Nigerian Air Force , have been confirmed dead in the helicopter crash which occurred in Damasak , Borno State , late on Wednesday .The deceased are identified as ; Flight Lieutenant Perowei Jacob , pilot in command ; Flight Lieutenant Kaltho Kilyofas , co -pilot ; Sergeant Auwal Ibrahim, flight technician ; Lance corporal Adamu Nura , gunner , and Aircraftman Meshack Ishmael , gunner .

The NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola , confirmed their deaths in a release on Thursday , noting that their remains had been deposited in Maiduguri , Borno State .

An attack helicopter of the NAF deployed in the fight against the Boko Haram insurgents had been reported to have been lost in combat .

The NAF had said the aircraft was lost around 10 . 30 pm on Wednesday , noting that the helicopter was providing close air support to troops of 145 Battalion at Damasak in Northern Borno State .

Northern Borno is a vulnerable area where the Islamic State of West African Province fighters were attempting to overrun military bases , with attacks on Metele , Buni Gari and Baga in the latest attempted invasion on December 26 and 27 , 2018 .

The NAF ’ s spokesman, Daramola , had said, “ A Nigerian Air Force helicopter was lost in combat while providing close air support to troops of 145 Battalion at Damasak in Northern Borno State . The mission was part of the ongoing counter -insurgency operations in the North -East .

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“The incident occurred about 7 : 45 pm on January 2 . Details of the cause of the crash are still scanty . As soon as the details of the crash are known, they will be made available to the public . ”

More details later …

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