• Short Summary

    A CONVOY OF 102 VEHICLES, CARRYING MILITARY SUPPLIES TO NIGERIAN FEDERAL FORCES AT ONITSHA, IN THE BREAKAWAY PROVINCE OF BIAFRA, WAS REPORTED TO HAVE BEEN DESTROYED IN AN AMBUSH ABOUT 14 MILES (22.5 KMS) NORTH OF THE CITY LAST WEEK.

  • Description

    A CONVOY OF 102 VEHICLES, CARRYING MILITARY SUPPLIES TO NIGERIAN FEDERAL FORCES AT ONITSHA, IN THE BREAKAWAY PROVINCE OF BIAFRA, WAS REPORTED TO HAVE BEEN DESTROYED IN AN AMBUSH ABOUT 14 MILES (22.5 KMS) NORTH OF THE CITY LAST WEEK. ACCORDING TO THE REBEL BIAFRAN MILITARY AUTHORITIES, THE CONVOY WAS CARRYING ABOUT 250 TONS OF STORES, VALUED AT BETWEEN 5 AND 6 MILLION POUNDS STERLING.

    THE STORES WERE SAID TO INCLUDE HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF ARTILLERY PIECES, MORTAR BOMBS, SHELLS, GRENADES, ROCKETS, ANTI-AIRCRAFT GUNS, ARMS AND AMMUNITION. FUEL, DRUGS AND FOOD WAS ALSO REPORTED TO BE AMONG THE SUPPLIES, WHICH THE BIAFRAN SPOKESMEN SAID WERE INTENDED FOR COLONEL MOHAMMED'S SECOND DIVISION, WHICH HAS HELD ONITSHA UNDER SEIGE FOR THE PAST SIX WEEKS.

    THE FIRST 60 VEHICLES OF THE CONVOY WERE REPORTED TO HAVE STOPPED AT ABAGANA, UNAWARE OF THE AMBUSH. THE LEADING VEHICLE, A PETROL TANKER, WAS SET ALIGHT UNDER A REBEL MORTAR ATTACK AND THE FOLLOWING VEHICLES WERE COVERED IN BLAZING FUEL.

    ANOTHER 42 VEHICLES WERE ALSO SAID TO HAVE RUN INTO THE AMBUSH THE FOLLOWING DAY AND WERE ALSO DESTROYED. THE WRECKED VEHICLES COVERED 2 1/2 MILES (4.8 KMS) OF THE MAIN ROAD LINK BETWEEN ENUGU AND ONITSHA, COMPLETELY BLOCKING THE ROAD. FIGHTING IS REPORTED TO BE STILL RAGING IN ONITSHA, AFTER MORE THAN SIX WEEKS OF BLOODY BATTLES.

    THE REBELS CLAIMED THAT 2,000 NIGERIAN FEDERAL TROOPS ACCOMPANIED THE CONVOY AS REINFORCEMENTS FOR THE SECOND DIVISION. MOST, THEY SAID, WERE KILLED AND A FEW ESCAPED INTO THE BUSH.

    THE SPOKESMEN SAID THAT ABOUT 80 TONS OF WEAPONS WERE RECOVERED FROM THE WRECKED VEHICLES AND WERE BEING PUT INTO USE AGAINST THE FEDERAL FORCES.

    MEANWHILE, A REPORT FROM LAGOS SAID THAT FEDERAL TROOPS ARE PUSHING TOWARDS ABA, THE REBEL BIAFRAN ADMINISTRATIVE HEADQUARTERS, FOLLOWING THE SEIZING OF THE PROVINCIAL HEADQUARTERS, IKOT EKPENE, 20 MILES (32 KMS) EAST OF ABA.

    FEDERAL SOLDIERS WERE ALSO REPORTED TO BE HARASSING BIAFRAN POSITIONS NEAR THE TOWN OF OKRIKA, ONLY SIX MILES (10 KMS) SOUTHEAST OF PORT HARCOURT.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVADKXR6NMPHLDBCT81LZDUWQ81Q
    Media URN:
    VLVADKXR6NMPHLDBCT81LZDUWQ81Q
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    05/04/1968
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Black & White
    Duration:
    00:02:10:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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