NIAMEY: Boko Haram launched its first major attack in Niger on Friday (Saturday in Manila), triggering a forceful response from regional troops who claimed to have killed more than a hundred of the Islamists. Niger’s Defense Minister Mahamadou Karidjo reported that 109 of the Islamists were killed, along with four soldiers and a civilian. Seventeen other troops were wounded. Chadian forces, who have taken a lead role in battling Boko Haram in recent days, fought alongside Niger’s troops on Friday. Chad’s commander in Niger, General Yaya Daoud, was also wounded with a gunshot to the stomach, a security source said. The clashes in Niger came as regional efforts intensified to battle Boko Haram, which has waged a six-year insurgency centered in northeastern Nigeria, where the Islamists have seized swathes of territory. The conflict has killed at least 13,000 people and forced more than a million from their homes since 2009.