Emily Smith
Fri, Aug 4, 2023 1:40 PM

Militaries of West African Nations Discuss Possible Intervention in Niger

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Militaries of West African Nations Discuss Possible Intervention in Niger
The military leaders of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) are concluding a three-day meeting to discuss a possible intervention in Niger. The meeting aims to restore constitutional order after a coup in the country. Some ECOWAS member states, including Senegal and Nigeria, have expressed their readiness to deploy troops if the coup leaders do not relinquish power. However, other countries, such as Mali and Burkina Faso, have cautioned against the use of force, highlighting the potential repercussions and the risk of escalating conflicts in the region.

The military leaders of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) are concluding a three-day meeting to discuss a possible intervention in Niger. The meeting aims to restore constitutional order after a coup in the country. Some ECOWAS member states, including Senegal and Nigeria, have expressed their readiness to deploy troops if the coup leaders do not relinquish power.

The coup, led by the self-proclaimed National Council for the Salvation of the People (CNSP), took place on July 26th and resulted in the removal of President Mohamed Bazoum, the suspension of institutions, the closure of borders (which were later reopened), and the implementation of a nighttime curfew.

Niger now joins the ranks of Mali, Guinea-Conakry, and Burkina Faso as the fourth West African country to be led by a military junta since 2020. This recent wave of coups has raised concerns about political stability and security in the region.

During the discussions, the ECOWAS military chiefs are evaluating the operational plan for a potential military intervention to restore constitutional order in Niger. However, the use of force is not the preferred option for all ECOWAS member states. Mali and Burkina Faso, both governed by military juntas, have opposed military action, arguing that intervention in Niger would amount to a declaration of war against them as well.

Senegal has announced its willingness to attack Niger if the coup leaders refuse to hand back power to President Bazoum. Nigeria's military is also awaiting the decision of the ECOWAS military leaders.

In contrast, Guinea-Conakry, which has been led by a military junta since 2021, has warned that military intervention would lead to the "de facto rupture" of ECOWAS and a humanitarian disaster with consequences that could spill over into neighboring countries.

The ECOWAS Commissioner for Political Affairs, Abdulfatai Musa, stated that military intervention is considered a "last resort." Nonetheless, he emphasized the importance of demonstrating action rather than merely making empty threats.

Given the complex dynamics and the potential risks, the ECOWAS military chiefs are carefully weighing their options before deciding on the best course of action. Resolving the political crisis in Niger and restoring constitutional order will be crucial not only for stability in the country but also for the wider West African region.

Source of content: OOO News 2023-08-04 News

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