This August 3rd is National Day in Niger. The country celebrates the 63rd anniversary of its independence. But this year, no military parade. This morning, rallies took place in Niamey, where hundreds of demonstrators showed their support for the military putschists.
In Niamey, the demonstration ended at the end of the morning. Thousands of people, mainly men and young people, gathered at Place de la Concertation for a two-hour meeting during which several speeches were made, in particular by members of civil society from the M62 coalition.
In the crowd, clothes bearing the image of General Abdourahmane Tiani, commander of the Presidential Guard behind the coup and president of the junta of the National Committee for the Safeguarding of the Homeland (CNSP) and some Russian flags. Many slogans against ECOWAS were also heard. The latter issued a one-week ultimatum to the putschists to lay down their arms. Other slogans were also chanted against the French military presence.
Demonstrators marched peacefully in front of the French Embassy, without clashes. Elements of the National Guard of Niger had provided a security cordon between the French representation and the demonstrators.
Regarding the interior of the country, in Agadez, there too hundreds of people came out in support of the junta. This is a first in this emblematic city in the center of the country which had not taken sides since the start of the crisis.
The situation is very calm for the moment in Maradi, the economic capital located a few dozen kilometers from the border with Nigeria.