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Activists protest at Nigerian Embassy against Ecowas' military intervention in Niger

SIPA USA

France to leave Niger

After a marked increase in anti-French sentiment following a military coup in Niger on July 26, French President Emmanuel Macron announced that France will immediately withdraw its ambassador and remove its 1,500 soldiers over the next few months. The decision follows months of anti-French protests – linked to an increased presence of Russian mercenaries in the country – and escalating tensions between Paris and the coup leaders. Just hours before the announcement, the junta banned "French aircraft" from flying over the country.
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Colonel Sidi Mohamed delivers a message as he stands with other Nigerien junta leaders.

Reuters

New African alliance bolsters military junta in Niger

In what could prove to be a major stumbling block to restoring democratic rule in Niger, on Saturday its ruling junta signed a mutual defense pact with the governments of neighboring Mali and Burkina Faso.

The three countries have all seen their governments toppled by military coups since 2020. Niger’s fell most recently in June with the ouster of President Mohamed Bazoum, who remains under arrest on charges of “high treason.”

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Thousands of Nigeriens gather in front of the French army headquarter, in support of the putschist soldiers and to demand the French army to leave, in Niamey, Niger.

Reuters

Niger junta calls out France

The West African nation of Niger has accused former colonial power France of plotting military intervention to reinstate the government of ousted leader Mohamed Bazoum, who was removed from power in a military coup on June 26.

In a statement on national television, a spokesman for the ruling junta, Colonel Amadou Abdramane, claimed that France was deploying forces to other West African countries as “part of preparations for an aggression against Niger” and that military cargo aircraft were unloading supplies and equipment in Senegal, Ivory Coast, and Benin.

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People pose with soldiers as they celebrate in support of the putschists in a street of Libreville, Gabon.

Reuters

Another day, another coup in Africa

Just hours after being declared the winner of a fraught presidential election that the opposition says was plagued by irregularities, Ali Bongo Ondimba, the president of the central African state of Gabon, was ousted in a military coup – the seventh on the African continent in just two years.

Gen. Brice Clotaire Oligui Nguema, Bongo’s cousin who’s closely linked to the ruling regime, says he is now the president of a transitional government.

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Niger's security forces stands guard as pro junta supporters take part in a demonstration in front of a French army base in Niamey, Niger.

Reuters

Niger’s junta to try ousted president for “high treason”

The prospect of a diplomatic solution in the West African country of Niger – more than two weeks after a military coup – appears more remote than ever after military leaders announced that they’ll prosecute the recently deposed leader.

After weeks of back-and-forth with regional leaders, junta personnel say they will try President Mohamed Bazoum, who’s currently in custody along with his wife and son, for “high treason.”

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Niger's junta supporters take part in a demonstration in front of a French army base in Niamey, Niger, on Aug. 11, 2023.

REUTERS/Mahamadou Hamidou

Talk, not troops, in Niger

West African nations continue to dither on using force in Niger, even after last week’s resolution by the Economic Community of West African States to send in troops to restore the government of ousted President Mohamed Bazoum.

Instead, Nigerian President and ECOWAS Chairman Bola Tinubu is pursuing diplomatic efforts to resolve the crisis, including green-lighting a mission to Niger by a delegation of Islamic scholars, who met with coup leader General Abdourahamane Tchiani for several hours on Saturday.

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Members of a military council that staged a coup in Niger attend a rally at a stadium in Niamey, Niger.

Reuters

Is West Africa headed for war?

Almost two weeks after a military junta seized power in the West African state of Niger, the situation is becoming increasingly unstable, and hopes are fading fast that constitutional order can be restored.

The latest. On Thursday, members of ECOWAS, a West African bloc of 15 nations currently led by Nigeria, announced that they had standby forces in place ready to intervene militarily to reinstate ousted President Mohamed Bazoum, who became Niger’s first democratically elected leader in 2021.

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General Abdourahmane Tiani

Reuters

Will African states use force in Niger?

The clock is ticking down to a deadline for junta leaders in Niger to reinstate the democratically elected president ousted last week in a coup.

A group of West African states known as ECOWAS and led by Nigeria said that it would be willing to intervene – including militarily – if the junta doesn’t reinstate President Mohamed Bazoum, who is now under house arrest. Bazoum was elected in 2021 in the country’s first democratic polls.

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