Niger’s ousted president expressed fear that the country would come under Russian influence through the Wagner group. The junta that seized power in Niger denounced military agreements with France and announced the revocation of the powers of Niger’s ambassadors to France, as well as the United States, Nigeria and Togo.
Amid these events, Niger’s ousted President Mohamed Bazoum made his first public statement. According to him, the entire central Sahel region could come under Russian influence through the Wagner Group.
The West African mediators left Niger on Friday morning without meeting with junta leader Abdourahamane Tchiani.
John Kirby, National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications at the White House, said:
“We continue to call for the safe release of President Bazoum and his family... We have also consistently supported the efforts of ECOWAS, the African Union and other governments in the region to resolve this crisis.”
The putschists promise an immediate response to the military intervention by countries of the ECOWAS, which is demanding the restoration of constitutional order in Niger.
Thousands of junta supporters took to Niamey’s streets on Thursday shouting anti-French slogans.