Nigerien soldiers killed in an ambush against a prefect's convoy near Burkina Faso

Six Nigerien soldiers were killed and three wounded on Wednesday (20 October) in an ambush of armed men on the convoy of the prefect of the Bankilaré department in the Tillabéri region (west), near Burkina Faso, the governor of the region told AFP.

“The Prefect was on leave and was returning to Bankilaré (capital of the department of the same name) when armed men ambushed him. There were six dead and three wounded among the soldiers of the National Guard who escorted him,” said Tidjani Ibrahim Katiella, governor of Tillabéri. The Prefect “is safe and sound”, he assured.

Although this attack on the convoy of a senior Nigerien official is the first of its kind in this area of the “three borders” between Niger, Burkina Faso and Mali, the region has been the scene of bloody actions by jihadist groups linked to Al Qaeda and the Islamic State (IS), especially against civilians, since the beginning of the year. At least three Nigerien police officers were killed and several wounded in the night from Sunday to Monday, during an attack on the Petelkole border checkpoint, 10km from the border with Burkina Faso.

The attacks against Petelkole and the prefect's convoy come after a two-day visit by Nigerien president, Mohamed Bazoum, to Burkina Faso, where he discussed with his Burkinabè counterpart, Roch Marc Christian Kaboré, the security situation in the Sahel following the decision of France to reduce its military forces in this region.

“We need to join hands, to support each other, to help each other to face one of the challenges we face, in particular terrorism,” president Bazoum said on Monday during a meeting with president Kaboré.

 

source: commonsapce.eu with Le Figaro (Paris) and agencies.
photo: Nigerien soldiers practicing field tactics during combat training facilitated by U.S. Army soldiers in 2007 (archive photo); U.S. Navy.

Related articles

Editor's choice
News
Borrell tells the European Parliament that the situation in Afghanistan was critical, but the EU will remain engaged

Borrell tells the European Parliament that the situation in Afghanistan was critical, but the EU will remain engaged

Borrell underlined that the European Union will make every effort to support the peace process and to remain a committed partner to the Afghan people. "Of course, we will have to take into account the evolving situation, but disengagement is not an option.  We are clear on that: there is no alternative to a negotiated political settlement, through inclusive peace talks.
Editor's choice
News
South Ossetia gets a young leader, but his message is old and rusty

South Ossetia gets a young leader, but his message is old and rusty

It was a piece of surreal political theatre of the sort that have become increasingly popular with the choreographers of the Kremlin. On Tuesday (24 May ) the liliputian self-declared Republic of South Ossetia, a de facto Russian protectorate, got a new president. Alan Gagloev was sworn-in at the theatre on Tskhinvali's main square. The choreography was perfect: a military guard of honour, a swearing in ceremony, and delegations of "foreign countries", except they represented other self declared entities such as Abkhazia, Lugansk, Donetsk, Nagorno-Karabakh etc. Most of the world still recognise South Ossetia as part of Georgia. Gagloev came to power unexpectedly, having defeated the incumbent Anatoly Bibilov in elections on May 17. The number of people who voted for him was 16,134 (representing 56.09% of the electorate). Bibilov left his successor a time bomb, due to go off on 17 July, in the form of a referendum calling for South Ossetia's unification with Russia. The Kremlin does not seem to be impressed. Gagloev made no reference to the referendum in his inauguration speech today, but he did heap praise on Russia and promised eternal friendship.

Popular

Editor's choice
News
South Ossetia gets a young leader, but his message is old and rusty

South Ossetia gets a young leader, but his message is old and rusty

It was a piece of surreal political theatre of the sort that have become increasingly popular with the choreographers of the Kremlin. On Tuesday (24 May ) the liliputian self-declared Republic of South Ossetia, a de facto Russian protectorate, got a new president. Alan Gagloev was sworn-in at the theatre on Tskhinvali's main square. The choreography was perfect: a military guard of honour, a swearing in ceremony, and delegations of "foreign countries", except they represented other self declared entities such as Abkhazia, Lugansk, Donetsk, Nagorno-Karabakh etc. Most of the world still recognise South Ossetia as part of Georgia. Gagloev came to power unexpectedly, having defeated the incumbent Anatoly Bibilov in elections on May 17. The number of people who voted for him was 16,134 (representing 56.09% of the electorate). Bibilov left his successor a time bomb, due to go off on 17 July, in the form of a referendum calling for South Ossetia's unification with Russia. The Kremlin does not seem to be impressed. Gagloev made no reference to the referendum in his inauguration speech today, but he did heap praise on Russia and promised eternal friendship.