Hannah Brown
Fri, Aug 25, 2023 11:15 PM

Algeria Reveals Roadmap for Resolving Niger Crisis

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Algeria Reveals Roadmap for Resolving Niger Crisis
Algerian Foreign Minister Ahmed Attaf has revealed a political roadmap aimed at resolving the crisis in Niger during his visit to Abuja, Nigeria. The roadmap focuses on avoiding military intervention and restoring constitutional legitimacy in Niger. However, the success of Algeria's diplomatic efforts remains uncertain given the regional competition and the recent challenges faced by Algerian diplomacy in dealing with crises and tensions in the surrounding region.

Abuja - Algerian Foreign Minister Ahmed Attaf unveiled a political roadmap devised by his country to resolve the crisis in Niger. This announcement came during his visit to the Nigerian capital as part of an African tour that included several countries from the ECOWAS group. The roadmap was also relayed by the ministry's secretary-general to newly appointed officials in Niamey, marking a new step in the escalating political and diplomatic momentum. However, the success of this roadmap remains uncertain due to regional competition and the lack of recent diplomatic success from Algeria regarding its surrounding crises and tensions.

Attaf confirmed during his statement in Abuja, where he visited to avoid the military intervention option in Niger, that President Abdelmadjid Tebboune firmly believes that there is still room to achieve this noble goal. He explained that the president has developed a clear vision for resolving the crisis and is determined to enforce its principles and guidelines, guaranteeing full respect for the African legal framework that prohibits and rejects unconstitutional changes of governments and seeks to restore constitutional order in Niger.

The Algerian minister did not disclose the details of the mentioned roadmap, only mentioning "four axes" aimed at avoiding military intervention in Niger. Military intervention could have serious consequences for the security and stability of the region. These axes also aim to restore constitutional legitimacy in Niger and free President Mohamed Bazoum.

Algeria's move comes amidst varying political and diplomatic initiatives pursued by influential parties in the African context, such as ECOWAS, the African Peace and Security Council, and France, all of whom incline towards the military option to deter the coup-plotters and restore constitutional legitimacy in Niger.

Meanwhile, Algeria, which initially condemned the military coup and called for a return to constitutional order in Niamey, seeks to crystallize a roadmap in the final moments before the end of the warnings period issued by the aforementioned powers to the coup-plotters. Algeria tasked its Foreign Minister and the Secretary-General of the Ministry, Ramtane Lamamra, with delivering the roadmap to African capitals within the ECOWAS group and to the coup-plotters themselves in Niamey.

Algeria has not yet revealed the content of the political initiative it launched, contenting itself with emphasizing the need to stick to the exit strategy of "rejecting military intervention and restoring constitutional legitimacy" without providing any further details. The hope is to convince African parties of the endeavor and await support from European countries and the United States, whose position on the military option ranges between reservation and rejection.

Algeria is one of the countries most vulnerable to the risks and repercussions posed by any security and military escalation in Niger, given the long border it shares with its neighboring country, spanning nearly a thousand kilometers. This represents a heavy burden befalling its military forces responsible for securing the border strip, especially amid the confusion surrounding the proliferation of arms in the region.

Attaf stated in his statement: "It is natural that the crisis in Niger is the main subject of this visit and the consultations I had with my colleague, the Foreign Minister of sisterly Nigeria, given the implications and repercussions that this crisis holds, which go far beyond the borders of this neighboring country to both Nigeria and Algeria."

He further explained that "agreement has been reached in this context, in particular, on the need to coordinate the efforts made by both countries, especially the initiatives taken by President Abdelmadjid Tebboune and his Nigerian counterpart, Muhammadu Buhari, in his capacity as the current President of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). The aim is to strengthen international and regional momentum and encourage everyone to support the political and peaceful approach to resolving the ongoing crisis in Niger."

Attaf emphasized that "the talks with our brothers in Nigeria have already confirmed that these four criteria have a broad consensus that can facilitate the activation of the principle of African solutions to African problems in dealing with the crisis in Niger," without revealing the nature of the mentioned axes. However, given the recent lack of success accompanying Algerian diplomatic efforts, the feasibility and success of this initiative in the face of increasing momentum, multiple initiatives, and influential players in the Nigerian scene are in question. These players have conflicting and intersecting geopolitical, regional, and international interests.

Algeria has so far been unable to achieve its goal of peace and national reconciliation in Mali, despite almost eight years passing since the signing of the agreement between the government and the conflict parties in Mali. Moreover, gradual disengagement from the agreement has been observed on the part of the ruling military leadership in Bamako.

Algeria has recently faced tense relations and crises in its regional environment. In addition to the declared rupture with Morocco and Spain, its relations with France have also witnessed an unprecedented strain. Algeria's caution towards Libya and fluctuating ties with Gulf countries further compound the challenges facing Algeria. These challenges contribute to its isolation and diminish the chances of success for any endeavor requiring regional support.

President Tebboune's dispatch of diplomat Mekrane Gourman to Niamey was the first contact Algeria has made with the coup-plotters in Niger, in which the Algerian vision for resolving the country's crisis was communicated. The approach aims to avoid military intervention and restore constitutional order, but the details leading to this outcome have not been disclosed. Gourman stated to the national radio station in Niger that he "warned that intervention in Niger would have serious consequences not only for Niger but also for all countries in the region."

Source of content: OOO News 2023-08-25 News

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