At least 70 deaths in alleged Nigerian Islamist attacks

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Simultaneous attacks targeted villages along the western border region with Mali.

In simultaneous attacks on two villages, at least 70 civilians were killed by alleged Islamist militants in Niger, near the border zone with Mali, security sources said. In the village of Tchombangou, forty-nine villagers were killed and 17 people were injured, one of the security sources said Saturday, requesting anonymity. A second source, a senior official in the Interior Ministry of Niger who also preferred to remain anonymous, said that in the village of Zaroumdareye, about 30 other villagers were killed. The government of Niger could not be reached for comment immediately. Niger has experienced previous attacks by Islamist militants linked to al-Qaeda and the Islamic State.

Hundreds of people were killed by attacks along the western border with Mali and Burkina Faso and the southeastern border with Nigeria last year.

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