The Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Christopher Musa, says the military has up-scaled the use of hard and soft power in counter-insurgency operations to contain emerging and changing nature of adversaries.

The CDS said this while delivering a lecture titled, ‘Non-Kinetic Operations and the Nigerian Armed Forces’, at the opening of a national security course on ‘Psychological Operations and Strategic Communication (PSYOPS)’, on Monday in Abuja.

The course was organised by the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) with the theme, ‘Winning Hearts and Minds for National Cohesion and Development’.

Represented by Rear Admiral Daupreye Matthew, Director of Training, Defence Headquarters, the CDS stated that the use of non-kinetic efforts under Operation Safe Corridor resulted in the surrender of more than 2,000 Boko Haran members between 2016 and 2017.

He said 67 per cent of those who surrendered belonged to Abubakar Shekau faction of the insurgents.

He added that 1,543 repentant terrorists graduated from Mallam Sidi Camp in Gombe State, while 1,935 others were released from Bulumkutu Camp in Borno, between 2016 and 2022.

According to the CDS, from July 2021 to May 4, 2022 alone, 51,828 terrorists and their family members surrendered, out of which 13,360 were fighters.

Musa said 106,000 terrorists and their family members had so far surrendered in the North East.

The defence chief, however, asked for an assessment and content analysis of the security policies, as well as legal and operational frameworks.

Earlier, the Chief of Defence Intelligence, Maj.-Gen. Emmanuel Undiandeye, said that the 5-day programme was organized to strengthen security experts’ understanding of the dynamics of psychological operations and strategic communication.

He described psychological operation and strategic communication as an integral element of modern warfare.

Nigerian Military up-scaling use of soft power in counter-insurgency operations – CDS

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