Niger military base attack leaves 25 soldiers dead

The army in Niger says a military camp was attacked by suspected Islamist militants, killing at least 25 soldiers and more than 60 assailants.

This attack comes just days ahead of a summit in France with West African leaders to assess military operations in the Sahel region.

The attack took place on an army outpost in western Niger, just a few kilometers from the border with Mali.

It is close to where 71 soldiers were killed just a month ago, in an attack later claimed by the Islamic State Group affiliate in the region.

Militants linked to al-Qaeda are also present in the area, while the Boko Haram group are active on the country’s south-eastern border. Initial reports indicate that French and American partner military forces quickly intervened, using air power to help the army fight off the militants.

Along with neighbouring Mali and Burkina Faso, Niger has been a frontline in the war against Islamist militancy for many years, but the number of attacks has increased significantly, despite the presence of thousands of troops.