As the deadline for Niger Republic’s military leaders to reinstate ousted President Mohamed Bazoum approaches, concerns over potential military conflict with neighboring countries are mounting. ECOWAS defense chiefs recently concluded a three-day Extraordinary Meeting in Abuja, where they affirmed their readiness for military intervention in Niger.
The Committee of Chiefs of Defense Staff (CDS) emphasized the importance of a comprehensive approach, incorporating political, security, and diplomatic dimensions to address the crisis.
Abdel-Fatau Musah, the ECOWAS Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace, and Security, praised the military chiefs for developing a concept of operation for the military intervention aimed at restoring constitutional order in Niger. Musah stated that all necessary elements for the intervention, including timing, required resources, and deployment strategies, had been meticulously planned and refined. While ECOWAS remains committed to exhausting diplomatic efforts, the ultimatum’s expiration may trigger decisive action.
Efforts to negotiate with the military junta in Niger are ongoing, and the results will soon be presented to the leaders of the Central Government for a final decision on the crisis.
While ECOWAS advocates for peaceful resolutions, they firmly assert that if diplomatic efforts fail, the military must immediately restore constitutional order in Niger. The regional body urges the military to prioritize peace and the well-being of its population. If the coup leaders do not comply, ECOWAS stands resolved to ensure a smooth transition of power to civilian authorities.
The Nigerian Ministry of Defence echoes this stance, emphasizing their commitment to restoring democracy in Niger while underlining that the military option will only be considered as a last resort. The situation remains fluid, and ECOWAS leaders are closely monitoring developments in Niger to decide on further actions.