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Niger declares mourning after joint US patrol deaths

Niamey, Niger | AFP | Niger has declared three days of national mourning in memory of four of its soldiers killed alongside three US Green Berets in an ambush, state television said Friday.

The joint patrol came under fire on Wednesday in southwestern Niger near the border with Mali, in what Niamey called a “terrorist attack”.

The Pentagon said two other US soldiers were wounded. The attack occurred while they were assisting Nigerien counter-terror operations. Seven Nigerien soldiers were also injured.

The report confirmed the little-known presence of US troops in the turbulent area, part of the poor and politically fragile Sahel where jihadist groups are mounting an insurgency.

Western militaries have been actively supporting Niger forces in their effort to prevent jihadist groups in the Sahel from establishing a strong presence in the country.

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