The chief administrator (Governor) in each department is appointed by the government and functions primarily as the local agent of the central authorities. [40][43] The empire began declining in the 15th century due to a combination of internecine strife over the royal succession, weak kings, the shift of European trade routes to the coast, and rebellions in the empire's periphery by Mossi, Wolof, Tuareg and Songhai peoples. [20][39][61] Though largely successful in subduing the sedentary populations of the south, the French faced considerably more difficulty with the Tuareg in the north (centered on the Sultanate of Aïr in Agadez), and France was unable to occupy Agadez until 1906.

[24] Agriculture became widespread, notably the planting of millet and sorghum, as well as pottery production. Islam, widespread in the region since the 10th century, has greatly shaped the culture and mores of the people of Niger. Niger's area is 1,267,000 square kilometres (489,191 sq mi) of which 300 square kilometres (116 sq mi) is water. Richard Gray, J. D. Fage, Roland Anthony Oliver, eds. [39] Kountché died in November 1987 from a brain tumour, and was succeeded by his Chief of Staff, Col. Ali Saibou, who was confirmed as Chief of the Supreme Military Council four days later. The plateaus of the south, which form a belt about 900 miles long, may be divided into three regions. [44][46], In c. 1449 in the north of what is now Niger, the Sultanate of Aïr was founded by Sultan Ilisawan, based in Agadez. Illegal hunting, bush fires in some areas and human encroachment upon the flood plains of the Niger River for paddy cultivation are environmental issues. [46][54] During the later 18th century many Fulani were unhappy with the syncretic form of Islam practised there; exploiting also the populace's disdain with corruption amongst the Hausa elite, the Fulani scholar Usman Dan Fodio (from Gobir) declared a jihad in 1804. Since independence, Nigeriens have lived under five constitutions and three periods of military rule. "La Cure salée" (English: Salt Cure) is a yearly festival of Tuareg and Wodaabe nomads in In'Gall in Agadez Region traditionally to celebrate the end of the rainy season. They are Agadez, Diffa, Dosso, Maradi, Tahoua, Tillaberi, and Zinder.

As a result of this, France gained control of the upper valley of the Niger River (roughly equivalent to the areas of modern Mali and Niger). Their organisation was hierarchical though also somewhat democratic: the Hausa kings were elected by the notables of the country and could be removed by them. [102][103][104], Niger has a wide variety of ethnic groups as in most West African countries. [39] Following fraudulent local elections in 1999 the opposition ceased any cooperation with the Maïnassara regime. [119] Alcohol, such as the locally produced Bière Niger, is sold openly in most of the country. The defence ministry says the fighters were killed in southeast Niger and in neighbouring Nigeria. In 1515 Aïr was conquered by Songhai, remaining a part of that empire until its collapse in 1591. Nearly half of the government's budget is derived from foreign donor resources. At the same time the plurality of the population, in the Hausa borderlands between Birni-N'Konni and Maine-Soroa, have often looked culturally more to Hausaland in Nigeria than Niamey.

[107][108] Hausa and Zarma-Songhai, the two most spoken languages, are widely spoken throughout the country as first or second languages. [39] A puppet sultan was set up by the French and the decline and marginalisation of the north of the colony continued, exacerbated by a series of droughts.

[40] A Muslim, Mansa Musa performed the hajj in 1324–25 and encouraged the spread of Islam in the empire, though it appears that most ordinary citizens continued to maintain their traditional animist beliefs instead of or alongside the new religion. [51] Islam had been introduced to the kingdom by Arab traders from the 11th century, gradually gaining more converts over the following centuries. A notable culture of this late period is the Bura culture (circa 200–1300 AD), named for the Bura archaeological site.


[39][65] In the early 1970s, a combination of economic difficulties, devastating droughts and accusations of rampant corruption and mismanagement of food supplies resulted in a coup d'état that overthrew the Diori regime. These are the Gorouol, the Dargol, the Sirba, the Goroubi, the Djamangou, the Tapoa, and the Mékrou; the last two flow through the “W” National Park (so called because the Niger flows through the area in the form of a W). [46][49], Circa 1730–40 a group of Kanuri settlers led by Mallam Yunus left Kanem and founded the Sultanate of Damagaram, centred on the town of Zinder. Source: CIA World Factbook - This page was last updated on December 7, 2019, Land area (sq. The Next 10 Countries: The World's Most Likely New Nations, Algeria 951 km, Benin 277 km, Burkina Faso 622 km, Chad 1196 km, Libya 342 km, Mali 838 km, Nigeria 1608 km, Desert; mostly hot, dry, dusty; tropical in extreme south, Hausa 53.1%, Zarma/Songhai 21.2%, Tuareg 11%, Fulani (Peuhl) 6.5%, Kanuri 5.9%, Gurma 0.8%, Arab 0.4%, Tubu 0.4%, other/unavailable 0.9% (2006 est.

In addition to the national and regional radio services of the state broadcaster ORTN, there are four privately owned radio networks which total more than 100 stations. [39] In 1899–1900 France coordinated three expeditions—the Gentil Mission from French Congo, the Foureau-Lamy Mission from Algeria and the Voulet–Chanoine Mission from Timbuktu—with the aim of linking France's African possessions. The area is 76363 square kilometers.

41–60. Songhai began settling this region from the 7th to 9th centuries;[44] by the early 11th century Gao (capital of the former Kingdom of Gao) had become the empire's capital. The blank outline map represents Niger. By the late 17th century and into the 18th the Bornu kingdom had entered a long period of decline, gradually shrinking back to its Lake Chad heartland, though it remained an important player in the region. To the east the underlying rock reappears in the Damagarim, Mounio, and Koutous regions, to the north of which is the region of Damergou, consisting of clays. Report for Selected Countries and Subjects", World Economic Outlook Database, April 2018, United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, "Latest Human Development Index (HDI) Ranking (2018)", "Azelik Takedda et le cuivre médiéval dans la région d'Agadez", Ancient cemetery found in 'green' Sahara Desert, "Stone Age Graveyard Reveals Lifestyles Of A 'Green Sahara, "Graves Found From Sahara's Green Period", "Lakeside Cemeteries in the Sahara: 5000 Years of Holocene Population and Environmental Change".
Niger Bordering Countries: International human rights groups have criticised the government since at least 1996 as using regulation and police to punish criticism of the state.


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