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Niger military: Jihadists kill 71 soldiers in mass attack
Jihadists kill 71 soldiers in mass attack: Niger military
by Moussa Aksar
NIAMEY (Reuters) - Islamist militants killed 71 soldiers in an attack on a remote military camp in Niger near the border with Mali, an army spokesman said on Wednesday, in the deadliest raid against the Nigerien military in living memory.
Jihadists with links to Islamic State and al Qaeda have mounted increasingly lethal attacks across West Africa’s Sahel region this year despite the commitment of thousands of regional and foreign troops to counter them.
The violence has hit Mali and Burkina Faso the hardest, rendering large swathes of those countries ungovernable, but it has also spilled into Niger, which shares long and porous borders with its two neighbors.
Several hundred militants attacked a base in the western Niger town of Inates over a period of three hours on Tuesday evening, army spokesman Colonel Boubacar Hassan said on state television.