French President, Emmanuel Macron has announced that his country will withdraw its ambassador and troops from Niger Republic following the July coup that overthrew democratically-elected President Mohamed Bazoum.
France has 1,500 troops at its base in Niger and refused a request by the new military rulers for its ambassador to leave.
Macron on Sunday, September 24, announced he will order the immediate withdrawal of his troops and France’s ambassador to Niger.
“France has decided to withdraw its ambassador. In the next hours our ambassador and several diplomats will return to France,” Macron said in a televised interview on Sunday.
Macron said he told the ousted Bazoum on Sunday that “France has decided to bring back its ambassador, and in the coming hours our ambassador and several diplomats will return to France.”
Macron further stated France’s position that Bazoum was being held “hostage” and remained the “sole legitimate authority” in the country.
The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) imposed sanctions in the wake of the July coup, warning that it could intervene militarily if diplomatic efforts to return Bazoum to power fail, as a last resort. But ECOWAS stopped its rhetoric as regional countries threw their weight behind the new military rulers.
Source: Lagos City Reporters