It is a real tragedy which occurred on Saturday in Niger. One hundred people were killed in attacks on two villages in the west of the country, in the midst of the presidential election. “We have just returned from the scene of the attacks […] In Tchombangou there were up to 70 dead and in Zaroumadareye, 30 dead, ”Almou Hassane, the mayor of Tondikiwindi, the mayor of Tondikiwindi, located in the Ouallam department, told Agence France-Presse on Sunday. .
“There were also 25 wounded, some of whom were evacuated to Niamey and Ouallam for treatment,” he added. The attack was carried out on Saturday “by terrorists who came aboard a hundred motorcycles”. To attack the two villages seven kilometers apart, the attackers “split into two columns: while one attacked Zaroumadareye, the other attacked Tchombangou,” the mayor said. The Tillabéri region, in which the two villages are located, borders Mali and Burkina Faso. It has been regularly targeted for years by deadly attacks by jihadist groups.
A largely revised upward balance sheet
The double attack was announced on Saturday, but without a precise assessment, by local elected officials, a source then evoking “about fifty dead”. According to a senior official in the Tillabéri region, it was committed in broad daylight, around 11 a.m. GMT, at the same time as the announcement of the results of the first round of the presidential election on December 27. The ruling party candidate Mohamed Bazoum, a former interior minister who promised to step up the fight against jihadist groups, came out ahead (39.33%).
Outgoing President Mahamadou Issoufou expressed in a tweet on Sunday his “deepest condolences to the populations of Tchombangou and Zaroumadareye, following the cowardly and barbaric attack on their villages”. According to a former minister from Tillabéri, Issoufou Issaka, contacted by Agence France-Presse, which evokes a provisional toll of “83 dead”, the jihadists would have committed this double massacre after two of them were “lynched »By the population.