Niger village attacks killed 100, says prime minister

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One hundred people were killed on Saturday in attacks on two villages in western Niger, says Prime Minister Brigi Rafini.

Nigerian Prime Minister Brigi Rafini speaks during the first Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative West Africa Regional Summit to be held on April 17, 2019 in Abidjan.

Photo: AFP / Issouf Sanogo

Rafini announced the death toll in remarks broadcast on national television on Sunday from a visit to the zone, near the border with Mali. He did not say who was responsible for the attacks.

Security sources said on Saturday that at least 70 civilians had been killed in simultaneous attacks by suspected Islamist militants on the villages of Tchombangou and Zaroumdareye.

Niger has suffered repeated attacks by Islamist militants linked to al Qaeda and Islamic State near its borders with Mali and Burkina Faso, part of a wider security crisis in West Africa’s Sahel region.

It has also seen tit-for-tat killings between rival ethnic communities that have been stoked by violence and competition for scarce resources.

-Reuters

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