- Title: Merkel in Niger on Africa tour, seeking migration curb through development
- Date: 10th October 2016
- Summary: MILITARY BAND PLAYING MERKEL AND ISSOUFOU LISTENING TO THE BAND TRADITIONAL DANCERS MERKEL AND ISSOUFOU WALKING PAST SOLDIERS NIGER AND GERMAN FLAGS MORE OF MERKEL AND ISSOUFOU WALKING
- Embargoed: 25th October 2016 13:11
- Keywords: Chancellor Merkel Niger Issoufou President migration security development
- Location: NIAMEY, NIGER
- City: NIAMEY, NIGER
- Country: Niger
- Topics: Diplomacy/Foreign Policy,Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA00253FASZR
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrived in Niger on Monday (October 10) on the second day of an African tour aimed at seeking investment opportunities which her government hopes will drive economic development on the continent, and curb future waves of migration to Europe.
Merkel flew in from Mali, her first stop, a country she promised to help with development and security. Mali and Niger contain central smuggling routes for migrants from other parts of West Africa.
The region is also a hotbed for Islamist militants, some with links to al Qaeda. Last week, at least 22 Niger soldiers were killed in an attack on a camp for refugees from Mali in Tassalit.
Niger's small army is currently battling Boko Haram militants who launch raids across its southern border from Nigeria. There are also concerns that Islamic State fighters could be pushed into Niger if they are displaced by a Libyan government offensive.
Merkel and her Niger counterpart, President Mahamadou Issoufou, are expected to hold a joint news conference during her visit. The German leader is also expected to meet with the Niger branch of the International Organisation for Migration (IOM).
She has described Africa, with its population of 1.2 billion, as "the central problem" in Europe's migration crisis.
Last month, the chancellor said the European Union should seek immigration negotiations with African countries similar to the discussions already underway with Turkey.
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