The Diffa region located in the south-east part of Niger republic has been a victim of terrorist attacks and one of the major groups which plague the region are the Nigerian based forces (Boko Haram). The insurgence of the incursions in the region could be attributed to the fact that the region shares a border with Borno state (Nigeria) a state which has been immensely troubled by Boko Haram activities. Further Intel highlighted another reason why activities of the faction are predominant in the region is that the movement has built up Diffa as a refuge, and recruitment centre.

Since 2015, sustained efforts by the Chadian, Nigerian and Nigerien troops to halt the Boko Haram activities have yielded little results. So far the region has noted the highest number of terrorist attacks in 2021 as statistics show about 30.85% of the attacks have been in Diffa while the Tillaberi and Niamey regions follow with 23.4% and 21.28% respectively.

Figure 1: Diffa Region

According to security reports, the three major departments in the Diffa region namely Maine-Soroa, N’guigmi, and Diffa region have conceded numerous attacks by Boko Haram and are highly susceptible to continued attack.  Between January and may 2021 Diffa department conceded approximately 30 major attacks this is why the department had been tagged as a hotspot for terrorist activities.

The major impacts of incessant attacks in the region include;

  • The mass displacement of inhabitants. Internally displaced persons (IDP) in the Diffa region as of April 2021 was approximately 11,887 in total.
  • Intercommunal clashes and aggravated violence: The formation of self-defence groups, which have encouraged violence, and arbitrate community conflicts that fuel the recruitment of armed groups,
  • Economic development has been crippled owing to the endless attacks targeted at farming agriculture which is the major source of income for the region.
  • Similarly, incursions by Boko Haram elements constantly spike inter-communal clashes and aggravated violence over access to resources which has become limited to a large extent.

In all, the Diffa region is extremely volatile and highly susceptible to repeated attacks by Boko Haram, ISWAP and Non-state armed groups.