The Niger Republic Government has declared a three-day nationwide mourning, starting from Tuesday, March 23, after armed assailants killed about 137 persons on Sunday.
At least 137 were killed and several others injured in deadly attacks by suspected terrorists on Sunday in the Southwestern Tahoua region of the country.
Officials had previously given a death toll of about 60 people, but the government on Monday said the attacks had left 137 persons dead.
This incident happened just days after at least 58 villagers were killed in the nearby Tillaberi region, in the volatile tri-border area plagued by violence and activities of terror groups.
Dozens of men on motorcycles were reported to have attacked nomadic camps in the towns of Intazayene, Woursanat and Bakorat on March 21.
“In the afternoon of Sunday, March 21, 2021, at around 1 p.m. (1200GMT), the localities of Intazayane, Bakorat, Wirsnat and several other hamlets and camps located in the department of Tillia, Tahoua region, witnessed an attack perpetrated by armed bandits,” said Abdourahamane Zakaria, the government spokesperson in a statement read on national TV.
The newly elected President Mohamed Bazoum whose runoff election vote last month was confirmed on Sunday by the country’s top court described the attacks as ‘barbaric’ while offering his condolences.
Bazoum, a former interior minister, was the preferred successor of the outgoing President Mahamadou Issoufou.
Niger has been witnessing a series of attacks and insecurity incidents in its border areas with Mali, Nigeria and Chad.
The country plays a vital role in western counter-terrorism efforts in the Sahel and Niger also part of the G-5 Sahel force to complement French Operation Barkhane.
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