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Niger’s Military Leader Vows to Prosecute Ousted President for Treason



The recently established military junta in Niger has declared its intention to bring charges of high treason against former President Mohamed Bazoum, who was ousted from power. Colonel Amadou Abdramane, a spokesperson for the junta, made this announcement during a television broadcast on Sunday evening.

The statement said,

  • “The Nigerien government has to date, gathered the necessary evidence to prosecute the deposed president and his local and foreign accomplices before the competent national and international authorities for high treason and undermining internal and external security of Niger,”

The Coup in Niger 

Niger had plunged into a state of political turmoil since the latter part of the previous month when Bazoum was forcibly removed from power in a coup carried out by the presidential guard.

This event, known as the July coup, has garnered intense international criticism and has brought renewed instability to a volatile region in Africa that both coups and militant extremism have plagued. 

Situated at the core of the Sahel, Niger had stood as one of the few remaining democratic nations in its vicinity.  

ECOWAS efforts in reinstating democracy in Niger

In response to the coup, leaders of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) swiftly imposed sanctions and issued an ultimatum to the ruling military junta.  

The ultimatum demanded that the junta relinquish power within a week or potentially face intervention by military forces.  

Leaders from West Africa escalated their rhetoric against the coup organizers in Niger and commanded the mobilization of a regional standby force to reinstate constitutional order in the nation. 

Previously, ECOWAS had granted the coup leaders until August 6 to release

Bazoum and restore him as the president, surrendering control, or risk facing military action as a final recourse. 

Recently, ECOWAS reported that a planned joint mission involving the United Nations and the African Union, intended to meet with the Nigerien military junta, was unsuccessful.  

The mission was cancelled after the military authorities in Niamey communicated their inability to receive the tripartite delegation. 

Niger opens to negotiation 

It was reported over the weekend that the Nigerien junta after meeting with prominent Muslim clerics expressed their willingness for a diplomatic solution to the political situation in the country. General Abdourahamane Tiani said,

  • “Their doors were open to exploring diplomacy and peace in resolving the matter”  

He also said the coup was well intended and it was painful that ECOWAS had to issue an order for a reinstatement of President Bazoum without hearing their side of the story.