Niger: Potential ECOWAS Military Intervention Still on Standby

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On Saturday, September 10, the Nigerien junta accused France of preparing an aggression, stating that Paris “continues to deploy its forces in several ECOWAS countries.” “We do not recognize the legitimacy of the coup leaders’ statements,” responded Emmanuel Macron from the G20 summit in India. Within ECOWAS, the potential military intervention against the authors of the late July coup in Niamey remains a possibility, although it appears that no one is in a rush.

In reality, according to our information, Senegalese troops are ready but awaiting the politicians’ decision. Some are questioning whether President Macky Sall has changed his stance on the issue.

Ghana has also agreed to provide troops. They are ready, although some observers wonder if this economically challenged country truly has the means to finance the deployment of its soldiers to the front.

Then there is Nigeria. Initially, President Bola Tinubu was the most determined to restore constitutional order in Niger by force if necessary. Abuja is the driving force behind a potential military intervention. However, in recent weeks, Nigeria has been taking one step forward and one step back on the issue.

It is worth recalling that at the end of August. For the first time since the crisis in Niger began, the President of Nigeria and current ECOWAS Chair mentioned the possibility of a transition “if the military regime [in Niamey] shows sincerity.” These remarks were transmitted in a statement on August 30 by the Nigerian presidency. Still, they were denied by ECOWAS, which had to refute the idea of a “transition timetable,” even though Nigeria has been considered one of the driving forces behind a potential military intervention in Niger from the outset.

Soukaina Sghir

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