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Toppled Niger authorities inspired French strikes to free captured president, junta claims | World Information

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Niger’s army junta, which has overthrown the nation’s elected chief, has claimed the ousted authorities authorised France to hold out strikes to free the president.

It comes after the presidential guard surrounded the palace in the capital, Niamey, and detained elected president Mohamed Bazoum final week.

Mr Bazoum was elected two years in the past in Niger’s first peaceable, democratic switch of energy since independence from France, and was largely seen as a Western, and regional, ally in West Africa.

In new feedback, one of many leaders of the army coup, Colonel Amadou Abdramane, alleged the Niger overseas minister, appearing as prime minister, signed the order permitting France to take motion.

France, which dominated Niger as a colony till 1960, has 1,500 troopers within the nation, who had been conducting joint operations with its authorities, with protesters showing to be in opposition to having overseas army forces of their nation.

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The now-ruling army has warned overseas governments in opposition to attempting to free Mr Bazoum, saying it could end in chaos and bloodshed.

France’s overseas ministry refused to substantiate or deny that authorisation had been made, telling journalists the one authority it recognises is that of Mr Bazoum.

The feedback from the junta come because the chief they ousted final week is pictured for the primary time since being detained.

Mohamed Bazoum (R) pictured with Chad chief Mahamat Idriss Deby (L). Pic: Mahamat Idriss Deby/Fb

Showing in a Fb publish from Chad chief Mahamat Idriss Deby, Mr Bazoum is seen smiling contained in the presidential palace, the place he’s being detained.

Writing alongside the images, Chad’s chief wrote: “I had in-depth discussions with the leaders… in a fraternal method which goals to discover all avenues so as to discover a peaceable answer to the disaster which is shaking this neighbouring nation.”

Mr Deby additionally spoke to the junta-installed chief Normal Abdourahamane Tiani throughout his go to.

Learn extra:
How Wagner is providing cover for Putin in Niger

Russia will look on coup ‘very favourably’

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Head of coup turns into Niger’s chief

Protesters wave Russian flags on the streets of Niamey

On Sunday, anti-government protesters marched through the streets of the capital waving Russian flags and denouncing France.

Demonstrators in Niamey converged on the French embassy and set hearth to its doorways, stoned the constructing and burned the nation’s flags.

Russian mercenary group Wagner is already working in neighbouring Mali and its boss Yevgeny Prigozhin has hailed the coup as excellent news and supplied his fighters’ companies.

The Kremlin mentioned the state of affairs in Niger is “trigger for critical concern”, with spokesperson Dmitry Peskov saying that Russia known as for all sides within the coup to point out restraint.

The coup in Niger has been broadly condemned by neighbours and worldwide companions together with the United States, the United Nations, the European Union and France.

They’ve all refused to recognise the brand new leaders and have demanded the elected president’s return.

Nigerien security forces launch tear gas to disperse pro-junta demonstrators gathered outside the French embassy, in Niamey, the capital city of Niger July 30, 2023. REUTERS/Souleymane Ag Anara NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES
Tear fuel has been used to disperse anti-government protesters

Improvement help suspended by France

Niger is likely one of the poorest international locations on the earth, receiving near $2bn (£1.6bn) a 12 months in official improvement help, in accordance with the World Financial institution.

It is usually a safety accomplice of France and the US, which each use it as a base to combat an Islamist insurgency in West and Central Africa’s wider Sahel area.

Battle consultants say out of all of the international locations within the area, Niger has essentially the most at stake if it turns away from the West, given the tens of millions of {dollars} of army help the worldwide group has poured in.

France has suspended all improvement help and different monetary help for Niger.

The Elysee mentioned in an announcement: “Anybody who assaults French nationals, the army, diplomats, or French pursuits will spur a direct and uncompromising response from France.”

Within the UK, the International, Commonwealth and Improvement Workplace mentioned in an announcement that Britain “condemns within the strongest attainable phrases makes an attempt to undermine democracy, peace and stability in Niger”.

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