American forces in Africa will soon escalate their war against militants in the Sahel by using armed drones to attack them.
The attacks will be launched in the coming months from new facilities which the United States Air Force is building at Agadez in central Niger.
The U.S. military has killed al Shabaab militants in drone strikes in Somalia for some time. But Foreign Policy reports that in the Sahel, the drones have until recently been based in the Nigerien capital, Niamey, and used only to collect intelligence.
The service says the government of Niger asked the U.S. to deploy armed drones after an ambush last November in which militants claiming to be from “Islamic State in the Greater Sahara” killed five Nigerien and four American troops