Niger: 30 civilians killed near Malian border
By Kane Illa
NIAMEY, Niger (AA): At least 30 Nigerien civilians were killed on Sunday in a series of attacks on villages in northwestern Niger near the Malian border, said a security source on Monday.
“Unidentified armed men attacked villages in the Tillia department, in the Tahoua region,” a security official told Anadolu Agency on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on speaking to the media.
No official statement has been made and no claim of responsibility reported so far.
This is the second armed attack targeting Nigerien civilians in a week.
Last Monday, unidentified gunmen attacked and killed at least 58 civilians returning from a weekly market in the Banibangou department, Tillaberi region, near the Malian border, according to government spokesman Abdourahamane Zakaria.
The government had declared a three-day mourning to pay tribute to the victims.
The Tillaberi region has been frequently targeted by terrorist groups based in Mali since 2017, with a state of emergency declared in the area.
Niger, Burkina Faso, and Mali in the Sahel are at the epicenter of one of the world’s fastest-growing displacement and protection crises.
The region hosts 851,000 refugees and nearly 2 million displaced people, according to the UN refugee agency.
In January, around 100 people were killed in attacks in two Tillaberi villages after the first round of presidential elections.
[Map of Niger by CIA Factbook/Public Domain]