NIAMEY, NIGER, 20 JUNE 2018 – Violent and repeated cross border raids by jihadist insurgents hitting western parts of Niger close to the border with neighboring Mali have forced 16,000 people to flee their homes, according to the United Nations.

The majority of the internally displaced persons (IDPs) are in the regions of Tillaberi and Tahoua on Niger’s border with Mali.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs blamed an “intensification of inter-community conflicts” for the leap in the number of IDPs.

Efforts are underway to put together a five nation so-called G5 international force – 5,000-man strong – to combat the insurgents and criminal gangs operating on the border regions between Niger and Mali.

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