On 29 January 2021, United States Special Operations Forces (USSOF)’s Civil Military Support Element—Niger supported and enabled Actions Civilo-Militaire (ACM) partners to distribute Humanitarian Assistance for displaced persons following terrorist attacks on Tchombangou and Zaroumadareye. The attacks caused more than 1,500 families to leave their homes and relocate in Mangaize for security and support.
Governmental officials, Nigerien Defense and Security Forces, and local leadership coordinated and distributed the U.S. Department of Defense donation $43,000 (23.3 million CFA) worth of Humanitarian Aid. Products such as rice, sleeping mats, water buckets, mosquito nets, malaria and respiratory medication, and radios were distributed to families.
“Every day we work with our Nigerien partners to enable and support their efforts in serving and protecting the Nigerien people. The United States provided the aid, and the Nigerien military led and managed the distribution effort,” explained U.S. Army Captain Cassandra McDonald.
A recipient of aid from Tchombangou said, “We are thankful and grateful for the help. You warmly welcome us, we saw all the aid such as rubber trays, we saw medicine, we saw soaps, we thank you greatly. May God pour on us his blessings and peace.”
Food security remains a key challenge in Ouallam, particularly for displaced populations and host communities like Mangaize. As such, local leaders used the event to discuss plans for displaced persons to return to their homes and to address security challenges.
U.S. Embassy spokesperson Stephen E. Dreikorn added, “Whether Department of Defense, Department of State, U.S. Agency for International Development, or Millennium Challenge Corporation, we do these types of activities frequently in Niger. They show the depth and breadth of U.S. – Nigerien cooperation and how our bilateral cooperation benefits the people of Niger.”