Nigerien commandos simulate a raid on a militant camp during the US-sponsored Flintlock exercises in Ouallam. File picture: Aaron Ross/Reuters
Nigerien commandos simulate a raid on a militant camp during the US-sponsored Flintlock exercises in Ouallam. File picture: Aaron Ross/Reuters

More than 70 killed in attack on Niger military camp

By DPA Time of article published Dec 12, 2019

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Niamey - An attack on a military camp in western Niger has left

71 military personnel dead, according to an army statement read on

national television late Wednesday.

Fifty-seven of the attackers were also killed, the statement said,

while 12 people were injured and several others were missing.

The assault took place on Tuesday evening. Unidentified armed

attackers arrived at the camp in the town of Inates - near the border

with Mali - on motorbikes and pickup trucks as soldiers were

preparing for evening prayers, according to a local source.

It was the second attack in less than six months on the camp.

Eighteen soldiers had been killed in an attack in July for which the

Islamic State in West Africa Province - a splinter group of the Boko

Haram terrorist group - had claimed responsibility.

Islamist terrorist groups are especially active in Niger's west, not

far from the borders with Mali and Burkina Faso. Some of them are

loyal to al-Qaeda while others are tied to Islamic State.

Tuesday's attack led President Issoufou Mahamadou to cut short a trip

to Egypt, where he was attending a conference on sustainable peace,

security and development in Africa. His office called the attack a

"tragedy" on Twitter.

Mahamadou arrived back in the Nigerien capital Niamey on Wednesday

evening and is due to chair a meeting of the National Security

Council on Thursday, his office tweeted.

The Inates attack came 24 hours after another assault on a military

base in the region of Tahoua, which left three soldiers and 14

"terrorists" dead, according to the Nigerien Defence Ministry.

dpa

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