Nigerian soldiers on Monday shot dead a man suspected to have acted as a spokesman for Islamist group Boko Haram and arrested two other high-ranking members, a military official said.
"We carried out an operation early this morning in which we killed a media man of Boko Haram terrorists and arrested two field commanders of the sect," said Lieutenant Iweha Ikedichi, spokesman for a military task force, adding he did not have their exact identities.
Soldiers involved in the operation on the outskirts of the city of Kano said the man killed was suspected to be one of the Boko Haram spokesmen who uses the alias Abul Qaqa.
The operation at a checkpoint was carried out with the use of intelligence information, they said.
Statements are often issued on behalf of Boko Haram in the name of Abul Qaqa, and someone identifying himself by that name has regularly held phone conferences with journalists.
Earlier this year, security sources said a suspect believed to be a person who goes by the alias Abul Qaqa had been arrested.
At the time, a purported Boko Haram member confirmed one of the group's high-ranking members was arrested, but refuted reports that the detained person was its spokesman.
Boko Haram has been blamed for more than 1,400 deaths as part of its insurgency in Nigeria's northern and central regions.© ANP/AFP