Niger president visits displaced persons, reaffirms commitment to anti-jihadist fight

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Mohamed Bazoum, President of Niger   -  

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BOUREIMA HAMA/AFP or licensors

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Niger's President Mohamed Bazoum on a visit to the west of the country to meet displaced persons has reaffirmed his commitment to the anti terrorism fight. Bazoum on Thursday visited displaced persons in the Tera region; tri-border area (Burkina Faso-Mali-Niger) which is under pressure from jihadists.

Some 13,500 people are displaced in Tera whose proximity to Mali and Burkina Faso, has left the town exposed to the horrors of terrorism.

**"All this has no chance of happening if we, the state, do not deploy the necessary forces with the necessary means so that we create the necessary balance of power to demobilise those who are engaged in this journey."**Mohamed Bazoum, President of Niger told the crowd that came to welcome him.

Since 2015, fighting from Mali has spilled into Niger’s border region, while militants from Boko Haram, and armed bandits have spread from Nigeria into the Sahel region.

Some 3,000 special forces from Operation Niya are fighting the jihadists in the Tera area of Niger without respite.

"When you return (to your home), as I hope you will, we will guarantee you all the security conditions you need because by staying here in Tera, you will not farm and you will depend on the more or less consistent humanitarian assistance that will be given to you. "But if you go back to your homes on the eve of the dry season, you will be able to cultivate your fields, take care of your animals, or at least what is left of them, because I know that terrorists have hurt you a lot in this case, and you will be able to live in the dignity you aspire to." Mohamed Bazoum, President of Niger.

On Wednesday, Niger reportedly received six Turkish Bayraktar TB2 drones as part of an arms contract signed in November 2021. The agreement also includes Hurkus light attack aircraft and armored vehicles.

Bazoum, who took office last year, has tried to position his country as a model for international cooperation in fighting jihadis after Mali fell out with France and ended France’s Operation Barkhane on its territory.

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