LAGOS, Aug. 2 (Xinhua) -- Nigerian troops operating in oil rich Niger Delta region remain professional and civil in dealing with security threats by militant groups in the area, an official said Tuesday.
Rear Admiral Joseph Okojie, Commander of the Joint military force deployed to the Niger Delta, told reporters in southern city of Yenagoa on Tuesday that the deployment of troops and equipment on Monday at Kaima in Bayelsa State in the region was part of normal operations to keep the region safe.
Troops and military hardware were deployed to Kaima in Bayelsa following threats by a militant group to take control of the area.
"Our presence is part of our normal duty to reassure the people that there is no cause for alarm," Okojie said.
Militants have in the last three months inflicted massive damage on the economy through the destruction of gas and crude oil pipelines.
The Niger Delta Avengers have refused entreaties from government and have insisted on autonomy for the region or complete control of crude oil.
The Avengers, who emerged in May 2016, did not give the new government prior notice before embarking on massive destruction of oil and gas infrastructure. They have also resorted to killing and kidnapping of security personnel.