Guwahati News Desk: At least two people were killed and 18 injured amidst a clash that occurred between protesters and a French military convoy on Saturday.
As per the sources, the French convoy was heading towards Mali via Niger.
In addition, it had crossed the border on Friday after being blocked in Burkina Faso for a week by demonstrations there against French forces’ failure to stop mounting violence by Islamist militants.
The Interior Ministry of Niger said in a statement, “In its attempt to extricate itself, it (the French forces) used force. Sadly, we deplore the death of two people and 18 injuries, 11 of them serious.”
It added, “An investigation has been opened to determine the exact circumstances of this tragedy and determine responsibility.”
Moreover, the French military spokesperson Colonel Pascal Ianni informed that soldiers and Nigerian military police had fired warning shots to disperse protesters who were trying to pillage and seize trucks but said he could not confirm or deny the reported casualties.
Ianni added that eventually the convoy was able to continue on its way towards the capital Niamey.
Furthermore, in a video shared by a local official, the protesters, mostly young men, could be seen shouting “Down with France!” as the black smoke rose from a burning barricade.