'Leave Niger to decide its future': Religious leader warns against military intervention

‘’Don’t invade Niger, invasion of the country will cause more trouble to the peace of the world."

In Summary
  • During her visit to Niger, she was not allowed to meet with either the detained president of the country or the head of the rebels.
  • On behalf of the coup leadership, the country's military chief of staff, Moussa Salaou Barmou, spoke with her on August 7.
Niger coup leaders
Niger coup leaders

Following the military takeover in the West African nation, the regional bloc ECOWAS urged Niger's new leaders to reinstate ousted President Mohamed Bazoum and restore constitutional order.

The organization stressed that it would take all necessary measures, including military ones, if its demands weren't met.

The leader of INRI Evangelical Spiritual Church from Nigeria, Primate Elijah Ayodele, has warned the international community, especially the United States, against invading Niger, which is experiencing an internal crisis following the military coup that overthrew the elected president.

"Leave Niger to decide its future. I use this moment to appeal to international communities not to attempt shedding blood in the Republic of Niger in a move toward restoring the ousted president," he said.

In particular, he warned the US not to interfere in the internal affairs of the country and let the people of Niger decide their future without any outside pressure.

He noted that the world shouldn't force democracy on the Niger militarily, stressing that intervention would pose a major threat to global peace.

‘’Don’t invade Niger, invasion of the country will cause more trouble to the peace of the world, it won’t be an easy thing. It’s too early to fight in Niger, don’t start a Third World War," Ayodele emphasised.

Ayodele's warnings came as Acting US Deputy Secretary of State Victoria Nuland met with Niger's military leadership for more than two hours of "very frank and at times quite difficult" talks in Niamey.

During her visit to Niger, she was not allowed to meet with either the detained president of the country or the head of the rebels.

On behalf of the coup leadership, the country's military chief of staff, Moussa Salaou Barmou, spoke with her on August 7.

After the talks, she said the US offered to help restore constitutional order in Niger, but the proposal was rejected.

"Their ideas do not comport with the constitution and that will be difficult in terms of our relationship if that’s the path that they take. But we gave them a number of options to keep talking and we hope they take us up on it," she said.

After Niger's presidential guard ousted the president and took over the country on July 26, the US announced the suspension of certain foreign assistance programs, noting that "the provision of life-saving humanitarian and food assistance will continue."

According to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Washington supports the efforts of West African countries to restore order in Niger.

However, the Biden administration didn't elaborate whether it would provide logistical or other support for a potential ECOWAS military intervention.

Blinken also said he had spoken with Bazoum, calling for his release from detention and expressing support for a "peaceful resolution" to the crisis.

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