US CIA set to launch drone strikes in Niger against IS, Al-Qaeda: Report
WASHINGTON, Sept 10, 2018 (AFP) The US CIA is set to launch drone strikes against suspected Libya-based jihadists with Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State group from a base in northeastern Niger, the New York Times reported.
Nigerien and US officials told the newspaper that Central Intelligence Agency operatives have been flying surveillance drones from a small airport in the town of Dirkou.
The airport has grown since February to include new runways and security posts, the Times reported late Sunday, citing satellite images.
Niger is one of several poor, fragile countries in the Sahel region hit by jihadist unrest.
Libya, which shares a border with Niger, has been thrown into chaos since the ouster of strongman Moamer Kadhafi in October 2011.