France’s military says drone strikes have killed nearly 40 fighters travelling on motorcycles near Niger’s border with Burkina Faso, calling the strikes a “new tactical success” for France’s counterterrorism efforts in Africa’s Sahel region. Niger’s government also issued a statement saying the fighters were killed after an attack earlier this week killed eight security forces in southwestern Niger. Al Jazeera reports that Niger has become a more reliable ally to France after military coups overthrew the democratically elected presidents of neighbouring Mali and Burkina Faso over the last two years.