Death toll rises on terrorist attack on Nigerien, American soldiers


Four Nigerien troops and three U.S. soldiers were killed in an attack earlier this week in southwest Niger near the border with Mali, the Defence Ministry said on Friday.

The ministry updated the casualty figures from the ambush on Thursday, adding the death toll of their own forces to the three soldiers already named by the U.S. side.

Eight other Nigeriens were wounded, as were two members of the U.S. forces who are providing training to the Nigerien Army on combating extremists in the region.

The joint patrol was ambushed by terrorist elements in a dozen vehicles and on 20 motorbikes,” Niger’s Defence Ministry said in a statement.

Niger’s President Mahamadou Issoufou said in an earlier address that the terrorist attack had claimed “a significant number of victims.”

“Our country has once again been the victim of an attack by terrorist groups,’’ Issoufou said in a speech on Thursday at the opening of an economic forum in the capital Niamey.

The U.S. Africa Command has said their two injured servicemen have been evacuated to Germany for medical treatment.

The attack took place around 200 kilometres north of Niamey, near the border with Mali, where the terrorist group al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb is active.

Germany to deploy helicopters, more soldiers to UN mission in Mali

File picture shows a German-French attack helicopter Eurocopter PAH-2/UHU called "Tiger" released by the German Defence Ministry in Bonn, March 7, 2001.  REUTERS/German Defence Ministry/Files

Germany’s cabinet on Wednesday approved the deployment of eight attack and transport helicopters and 350 additional soldiers to Mali as part of a UN peacekeeping mission.

A report from Berlin said that the helicopters would replace those of the Dutch army, while the additional troops would service and maintain the fleet.

Continue reading “Germany to deploy helicopters, more soldiers to UN mission in Mali”