The US is building a $100 million temporary base for surveillance drones in Agadez, central Niger to defend boundaries of the West African nation from IS militants.
Niger is facing the issue of incursions of IS militant group, Boko Haram and Qaeda-linked terrorists across its southern border with Nigeria. The southern region of Diffa, which borders the Boko Haram stronghold in northeastern Nigeria, is in a state of emergency and is often subjected to attacks, the intercept reported.
"At the request of, and in close coordination with Niger government, US Africa Command is establishing a temporary, expeditionary cooperative security location in Agadez, Niger," said US Africa Command spokesperson.
Agadez is an suitable, central location to enable ISR collection (intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance) to face the security threat across the Sahel and Lake Chad Basin region.
The $100 million includes initial costs for construction, fuel and equipment. Further, the Intelligence gathered by the drones will be shared with other partners such as Nigeria, Chad, Mali, she said.
Agadez is a main transit point for African migrants seeking a northwards path towards Europe.