French special forces took part in Niger operation: government

Reuters News
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Posted: May 24, 2013 8:07 AM

PARIS (Reuters) - French special forces took part in an operation at an army base in Niger on Friday to flush out Islamist militants suspected of involvement in an attack the previous day, Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said.

At least 21 people were killed and dozens wounded on Thursday in coordinated dawn assaults on a uranium mine run by French company Areva at Arlit and the military base in the city of Agadez in northern Niger.

"As I speak, the situation has been brought under control in particular in Agadez, where our special forces have intervened to support Nigerien forces at the request of President (Mahamadou) Issoufou," Le Drian told BFM television.

(Reporting by Marine Pennetier and Brian Love; Writing by Catherine Bremer; Editing by Angus MacSwan)