Intervention in Niger tantamount to declaration of war against Mali, Burkina Faso: Military governments

Tehran, IRNA - The military governments of Burkina Faso and Mali have warned that any military intervention against last week’s coup leaders in Niger would be considered a “declaration of war” against their nations.

Niger’s neighbors issued the warning in joint statements read out on their national broadcasters on Monday, days after West African leaders threatened to use force to reinstate Niger’s deposed President Mohamed Bazoum, Aljazeera reported.

“The transitional governments of Burkina Faso and Mali express their fraternal solidarity… to the people of Niger, who have decided with full responsibility to take their destiny in hand and assume the fullness of their sovereignty before history,” the military governments of the two countries said.

“Any military intervention against Niger would be tantamount to a declaration of war against Burkina Faso and Mali,” they warned, adding that such a move could result in “disastrous consequences” that “could destabilize the entire region”.

The coup in Niger on July 26 has sent shockwaves across West Africa, pitting the country’s former Western allies and regional bodies against other countries in the region.

Niger’s coup leaders, who have named General Abdourahamane Tchiani, the former presidential guard chief, as head of state, said they overthrew Bazoum over poor governance and discontent with the way he handled security threats from groups linked to al-Qaeda and ISIS (ISIL).

Meanwhile, a US official on Monday said the coup had not been fully successful and that there was still an opportunity to reinstate Bazoum. France, Niger’s former colonial ruler, and Germany echoed those comments.

On Sunday, Niger Republic suspended the export of uranium and gold to France with immediate effect. Protesters in Niger burned a French flag and shouted “Down with France!” as they supported the coup.


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