The U.S. military has confirmed three U.S. service members were killed and two others injured when a joint U.S.-Niger military patrol was attacked Wednesday in southwestern Niger.
The statement from the U.S. Africa Command says one soldier from a “partner nation” was also killed, without identifying the nationality of the victim.
No one has claimed responsibility for the attack on the patrol, which AFRICOM said took place about 200 kilometers north of Niger’s capital, Niamey, not far from the Niger-Mali border.
The United States has maintained a small force in Niger since 2013, helping the government battle two Islamist militant groups, Nigeria-based Boko Haram in the east and Algeria-based al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) in the west.
AFRICOM said the U.S. personnel, reported to be Green Beret special commandos, were “providing advice and assistance to Nigerien security force counter-terror operations” when the patrol came under hostile fire Wednesday.
It said the two wounded soldiers were evacuated in stable condition to Landsthul Regional Medical Center in Germany.
The White House said President Donald Trump, who had traveled earlier Wednesday to Las Vegas — the site of a mass shooting attack earlier this week — had been briefed on the attack.
– Dan Joseph I VOA