US President Joe Biden called for the immediate release of Niger’s elected President Mohamed Bazoum, and for the country’s democracy to be preserved. I call for President Bazoum and his family to be immediately released, and for the preservation of Niger’s hard-earned democracy,” Biden said in a statement, a week after the military coup.
The democratically elected Bazoum was overthrown on July 26 when members of his own guard detained him at the presidential palace. Britain ‘temporarily’ reduces embassy staff in Niamey. A few hours after the US, Britain also announced that it would be temporarily cutting its embassy staff in the Nigerien capital of Niamey.
“Due to the security situation the British Embassy in Niamey is temporarily reducing the number of its staff,” the foreign office said in a statement. France asks Niger forces to ‘fully guarantee’ embassy safety. France’s foreign ministry asked Niger’s junta to “fully guarantee” the safety of its embassy in Niamey ahead of planned protests in the capital following a coup.
Paris said it had asked Nigerien security forces to take the necessary measures to ensure that “the security of foreign diplomatic rights of way and diplomatic personnel” are guaranteed, adding that these were “obligations under international law, especially under the Vienna Convention”.
On Sunday, coup supporters attacked the French embassy in Niamey, setting fires outside its compound walls and smashing windows. The M62 Movement, an activist group that has organized pro-Russia and anti-French protests, has called for residents in Niamey to mobilise and block the airport until foreign military personnel leave the country.
Niger’s military ruler warns against foreign meddling, urges population to defend the country. Niger’s new military ruler lashed out at neighboring countries and the international community in a nationally televised speech Wednesday night, and he called on the population to be ready to defend the nation.
In one of few addresses to the West African country since seizing power from Niger’s democratically elected president a week ago, General Abdourahmane Tiani warned against foreign meddling and military intervention against the coup.
“We therefore call on the people of Niger as a whole and their unity to defeat all those who want to inflict unspeakable suffering on our hard-working populations and destabilise our country,” Tiani said.
Tiani, who commands Niger’s presidential guard, also promised to create the conditions for a peaceful transition to elections following his ouster of President Mohamed Bazoum.
Blinken tells Niger’s Bazoum US backs restoration of his government. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken told Niger’s ousted President Mohamed Bazoum in a phone call on Wednesday that the US remains committed to the restoration of the African country’s democratically elected government, the State Department said.
US orders evacuation of some embassy staff, families from Niger. The United States ordered the evacuation of some staff and families from its embassy in Niger after military officers seized power there, the State Department said on Wednesday, even as the mission will remain open and senior leadership will continue working from there.
“Given ongoing developments in Niger and out of an abundance of caution, the Department of State is ordering the temporary departure of non-emergency US government personnel and eligible family members from the US Embassy in Niamey,” State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller said in a statement. The United States remains committed to our relationship with the people of Niger and to Nigerien democracy. We remain diplomatically engaged at the highest levels,” Miller said.
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