By Spy Uganda Correspondent
Niamey: At least 100 civilians were killed and others wounded on Saturday by attackers in the Nigerien villages of Tchombangou and Zaroumdareye in western Niger, a stone throw from the border with Mali, Almou Hassane, the mayor of the Tondikiwindi commune that administers both villages confirmed.
The attacks were waged by “terrorists who came riding about a hundred motorcycles”, the top official commented on the latest attack to rock the landlocked Sahel nation’s embattled western Tillaberi land.
Gunshots in parts of the Diffa Region led to a low turnout yesterday. Weeks ago, Shekau’s BH stopped 12 communities from partaking in local elections and attacked one that did, killing 27. Another example of how BH terrorizes communities, in this case, to undermine democracy.
— Bulama Bukarti (@bulamabukarti) December 28, 2020
The attack occurred on the day of the announcement of the preliminary results of the first round of the presidential election in Niger, which saw former Foreign Minister Mohamed Bazoum leading.
General elections were held in Niger on 27 December 2020 to elect the President and National Assembly. As no presidential candidate received a majority of the vote, a second-round will be held on 21 February 2021.
Earlier reports by Radio France Internationale (RFI) had it that “jihadists” on Saturday had attacked the said villages, leaving at least 56 civilians killed and around 20 injured.
Niger, which has in recent time been engulfed in a war with the terrorist group Boko Haram*, saw its most recent attack on 12 December in the town of Toumour, where at least 28 people were killed and hundreds more injured, according to the UN Refugee Agency.
The UN vehemently denounced the act, with the UNRA saying that the Diffa region in southeast Niger “has been hit hard by increasing extremist violence in the Lake Chad basin that has forced hundreds of thousands into the region”.
“In the first nine months of this year, over 450 acts of killing, kidnapping, sexual and gender-based violence, and other serious incidents were reported”, the agency detailed the statistics.