20 killed in 2 simultaneous car bombs in Niger
NIAMEY, Niger (AP) -- Niger's defense minister announced that 20 Nigerien soldiers were killed and another 16 injured when a suicide bomber detonated a car loaded with explosives inside a military installation in the city of Agadez on Thursday.
Minister of Defense Mahamadou Karidjo told reporters that a simultaneous explosion over a hundred miles away in the town of Arlit inside a uranium mine operated by French nuclear giant Areva injured 13. Five suicide bombers died in the twin explosions, he added.
The government of Niger has decreed a 72-hour national period of mourning. The attacks are believed to have been carried out by Islamic extremists based in neighboring Mali. If so, this would be the single-most damaging operation they have carried out since January when France launched a military intervention to oust them.