World Tour – Jihadist attacks in Niger and Pakistan

MARY REICHARD, HOST: Coming up next on The World and Everything in It: World Tour with Africa reporter Onize Ohikere.

ONIZE OHIKERE, REPORTER: Villages attacked in Niger—We start today here in Africa.

Niger is holding three days of mourning for 100 people killed in jihadist attacks on two villages Saturday.

AUDIO: [Man speaking French]

Niger’s prime minister promised investigators would find the attackers and punish them. No group has claimed responsibility, but Islamic State in the Greater Sahara is active in the region.

The two villages sit near the borders of Niger, Mali, and Burkina Faso. It’s an area plagued by jihadist violence for years. Attackers in the region killed seven Nigerien soldiers in an ambush last month.

IS claims attack in Pakistan—Next to Pakistan and another militant attack.

AUDIO: [Man speaking Urdu]

Thousands of mourners from a minority Shiite community in Pakistan gathered Monday to protest an attack that killed 10 miners. Attackers kidnapped the men on Sunday as they slept near a remote coal mine. 

Islamic State fighters have claimed responsibility, although Pakistani officials deny the group’s presence in the country. The province of Balochistan is rich in oil and gas and has long struggled with ethnic, sectarian, and separatist insurgencies.

Protests against Netanyahu—Next we go to the Middle East.

AUDIO: [Sounds of protest]

Several thousand Israelis gathered in the streets of Jerusalem to call for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to step down. He goes to trial on corruption charges later this month, and protesters say he cannot continue to lead the country during the court proceedings.

Prosecutors released more details in the case on Sunday. The indictment alleges Netanyahu traded favors with a powerful media mogul in exchange for positive news coverage. It details more than 300 requests, including more time for positive stories, deleting unfavorable stories, and altering headlines he didn’t like.

Netanyahu denies all charges.

The trial is set to begin several weeks before Israelis go back to the polls for their  fourth national election in two years.

Dakar rally begins—And finally, we end today in Saudi Arabia.

AUDIO: [Sounds of engine revving]

One of the world’s most challenging off-road, endurance rally races began last week. The 12-stage event will take drivers through the deserts of Saudi Arabia.

Here’s three-time Dakar Rally champion Nasser Al-Attiyah after winning Monday’s second stage.

AL-ATTIYAH: It’s a good day but I don’t know how much we’ve won on Carlos and Stéphane. Look, we win the stage but I don’t know how far because yesterday we lost a lot of time.

The annual race started in 1978. Drivers then went from Paris through the deserts of Africa to Dakar, Senegal. This year, dozens of teams are competing in cars, trucks, and motorbikes.

That’s this week’s World Tour. Reporting for WORLD, I’m Onize Ohikere in Abuja, Nigeria.

(Yonatan Sindel/Pool Photo via AP, File) In this Dec. 22, 2020 file photo, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivers a statement at the Israeli Knesset, or Parliament, in Jerusalem.

WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

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