The Islamic fanatics of Boko Haram have launched their first assault on Niger, targeting the border town of Bosso. Until now most of the group's attacks have been in Nigeria, though it has also ventured into Cameroon where it killed at least 70 people in Fotokol on Wednesday.
Boko Haram terrorists reportedly attacked Bosso in the early morning using heavy weapons. The Niger government later claimed it had driven them back, killing 109 terrorists, while a civilian and four soldiers also died. Bosso is home to thousands of refugees who have fled the violence in Nigeria.
The Nigerian army has been heavily criticised for its failure to combat Boko Haram, while it killed at least 5,000 people in the country, and forced a million to flee their homes. Now Chad has deployed 2,500 troops to help Cameroon and Niger fight the terrorists.
Boko Haram, which means ‘Western education is forbidden’, has sworn allegiance to so-called ‘Islamic State’ in the Middle East. It is still believed to be holding 300 Nigerian schoolgirls it kidnapped last year. (See also my blogs of 3 March, 23 June, 19 December, 2014, and 15 January, 2015.)