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At least 71 soldiers killed in Niger militant attack

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Niamey: At least 71 soldiers were killed when armed militants attacked an amry camp in Niger, the West African country’s Defence Minister said.

The attack took place on Tuesday at the camp located near Niger’s border with Mali, reports the All Africa news website.

The three-hour assault was carried out by “heavily armed terrorists estimated to number many hundreds,” the ministry said in a statement on Wednesday.

It added that 57 of the attackers had also been killed.

No militant group has claimed responsibility for the attack so far, but fighters linked to the Islamic State (IS) terror group and Nigeria-based Boko Haram are active in the area, the BBC said.

The attack comes just after the Niger government requested a three-month extension to a state of emergency, first declared two years ago.

Niger’s security forces were struggling to contain the spread of armed groups.

In recent weeks, there have been increasingly bold attacks from the IS affiliate in the area of the country close to Mali.

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PM Modi gets thumbs up in Bihar even as Nitish remains unpopular

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The C-Voter Bihar opinion poll survey shows that even though majority of the respondents in the state are unhappy with the performance of Nitish Kumar as Bihar Chief Minister, most of them are behind Narendra Modi and his performance as the Prime Minister.

When it was asked to the respondents to rate Modi’s performance, 48.8 per cent categorised it as ‘good’ while 21.9 per cent dubbed it as ‘average’. Only 29.2 per cent thought it to be ‘poor’.

 

This is contrasting in respect of what most respondents had to say about Nitish Kumar. To give a sense of the perspective, only 27.6 per cent of them thought Kumar’s performance as Bihar Chief Minister has been ‘good’. That is almost half of the approval rating of Modi. As many as 45.3 per cent think that Nitish Kumar has fared poorly as Chief Minister.

If the survey is anything to go by, the BJP seems to enjoy an upper hand and a position of negotiation in the alliance.

The current survey findings and projections are based on the IANS C-Voter daily tracking poll conducted in the last seven days among 18+ people statewide, including likely voters.

The fieldwork covers random probability sampling during the last seven days from the release date. The sample spread is across all Assembly segments in the poll-bound state. The measure of error is +/- 3 per cent at macro level and +/- 5 per cent at micro level with 95 per cent confidence interval.

The elections for the 243 Assembly seats in Bihar will take place in three phases between October 28 and November 7. The results will be announced on November 10.

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