Niger’s President Mahamadou Issoufou announced Tuesday that a place in Niamey would be dedicated to the commander of the Inates military camp (west), killed in a jihadist attack with 70 of his soldiers.
« To immortalize his bravery, the public square adjoining the post office (in Niamey) will now bear the name of Lieutenant-Colonel Hassane Anoutab. I would like every young person who comes to this place to remember that the name they bear is that of a hero, « said President Issoufou in a televised speech on the occasion of the 61st anniversary of the Republic of Niger.
« Our soldiers who fell on the battlefield had fought courageously, inflicting great loss on the enemy, » added the head of state.
Mr. Issoufou also announced “the establishment of the first wafq (charity fund) for the pupils and widows of the nation”.
“The attack by Inates and those which preceded it remind us that we are at war against a treacherous enemy (…) who respects nothing, not even the rules of our religion which they cheekily claim”, a- he noted.
« We will strengthen our alliances » in order to « win the war, however long it takes », he promised. He assures that his government “will mobilize the material and human means and also the legal, institutional means in the fight against armed terrorist groups”.
Form “a broad front against terrorism”
The president exhorted the Nigeriens to “avoid any behavior or remarks likely” to “demoralize” the defense and security forces and to form “a broad front against terrorism”.
The president will attend a military parade for the Republic’s birthday on Wednesday in Tillaberi (west), public television said.
On December 10, 71 Nigerien soldiers died in the attack on Inates, the deadliest in Niger’s history, which was claimed by jihadists from the Islamic State group.
This attack caused great emotion in the country, which declared three days of national mourning and canceled the celebrations for the anniversary of the Republic.
French President Emmanuel Macron will pay a short visit to Niamey on December 22 to pay tribute to the soldiers killed with his Nigerian counterpart.
Niger, Burkina Faso, Mali, Chad and Mauritania, which form the G5 Sahel group, decided on Sunday in Niamey at a summit of heads of state to strengthen their cooperation, and they called on the international community to support them in order to stem the jihadist danger which strikes their countries more and more violently.