Seven members of Niger’s electoral commission (CENI) were killed in a landmine explosion while heading to the polling units in the Tillaberi region for the country’s presidential election runoff.
The victims were in a CENI vehicle when they hit the mine in the Dargol commune in the country’s southwest. Harouna Mounkaila, the vice president of CENI’s local branch, said “they were leaving to drop off the ballot boxes and the members of the polling station.”
Mounkaila added that 3 others were left with serious injuries.
The country is often under attack by armed groups including ISIL and al-Qaeda, and had ramped up security leading up to the election.
Thousands of soldiers had been stationed around the country to provide extra security as the country got ready for a peaceful change of government.