An air force fighter jet lost connection days before in Borno state while on a mission to help ground troops, Nigerian authorities said. The jihadist organization Boko Haram published a video on Friday stating it fired down the jet, according to SITE Intelligence Group, which observes jihadist activity.
Boko Haram issued a video that revealed what seemed to be a plane as it exploded midair. The video also displayed the remains of a man who was defined as the pilot of the plane by a Boko Haram fighter who conversed in the regional Hausa language. The Nigerian Air Force engraving on the aircraft matches the registration number of the Alpha-Jet which the Air Force said left disappeared while mission on Wednesday.
Air Force Spokesman Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet said in a comment that the Alpha-Jet lost connection with radar in Borno State “while on interdiction mission in support of ground troops.”
The Air Force stated that the plane which had two crew members might have collapsed, continuing that search and rescue trials are continuing.“At this point, the NAF is not ruling out anything regarding the incident. It however remains hopeful that the crew would soon be found and rescued,” it said in a statement.
Boko Haram has executed tens of thousands of people in its more than 10-year insurgency, which has also expanded to neighboring Cameroon, Chad, and Niger. The Nigerian-based jihadist group in 2014 also said it shot down a Nigerian air force jet.