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IN the aftermath of the July 26 coup that shook Niger’s political landscape, revelations have emerged confirming that the ousted government of the country sought assistance from France for military intervention to secure the release of deposed president Mohamed Bazoum.
An adviser to Bazoum, who wished to remain anonymous, disclosed that interim Prime Minister Massaoudou made a formal request for France’s support shortly after realising the gravity of the situation. The adviser stated, ‘When we realized, in the first few hours, that it was really a coup d’état, interim Prime Minister Massaoudou asked, quite normally, for France’s support,’ as reported by the French newspaper Le Monde.
According to the French publication, the request made by the ousted government was given serious consideration by French authorities. The revelation sheds light on the intricate dynamics and decision-making processes in the critical hours that followed the coup.
Bazoum’s government held significance as a strategic Western ally in counteracting militant activities and curbing the flow of migrants across the Mediterranean Sea. The Western partnership was underscored by the presence of approximately 1,500 French soldiers stationed in Niger, who had been collaborating on joint operations with the government.
The military administration that emerged after the coup, led by Abdourahamane Tiani, the commander of Niger’s presidential guard, alleged that the toppled government had authorized France to conduct an attack on the presidential palace in an attempt to secure the release of Bazoum. This revelation adds a layer of complexity to the post-coup scenario and highlights the intersection of domestic politics and international interests.
The July 26 coup disrupted the political landscape of Niger and triggered a cascade of events that resonated on both national and international levels. As revelations continue to unfold, they shed light on the intricate decision-making processes that unfolded during a pivotal juncture in the nation’s history.