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Niger: Algerian mediation “welcome”, says Nigerian diplomacy

Niger: Algerian mediation “welcome”, says Nigerian diplomacy
Supporters of Niger's Conseil national pour la sauvegarde de la patrie (CNSP)   -  
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Algeria's mediation with the military in Niger is "welcome", declared the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Nigeria, recalling that diplomacy was always the route favoured by ECOWAS which however maintains its threat of intervention, in an interview with France 24 broadcast on Thursday.

“We welcome all parties seeking to find a peaceful solution to this imbroglio, including Algeria,” said Minister Yusuf Maitama Tuggar, whose country, Nigeria, holds the rotating presidency of the Economic Community of States. West Africa (ECOWAS ), which threatens Niger with military intervention to restore constitutional order.

“The position of ECOWAS, however, remains the same. We are against this military takeover in Niger, and we insist that President Bazoum, who is the elected president of Niger, be released,” he said. 

The military option, "which does not necessarily result in a war as has been misinterpreted", is "not excluded", the minister clarified. “It remains relevant, but it is not the preferred option either, which is why many diplomatic efforts are still underway,” continued the minister.

ECOWAS has been threatening the perpetrators of the putsch with military intervention since July 30 to reinstate elected President Mohamed Bazoum in office, prioritizing the diplomatic route.

Algeria, which shares nearly 1,000 km of borders with Niger, has said it is opposed to any armed intervention in its neighbour. She thus proposed mediation with the military in Niamey “aimed at promoting a political solution to the crisis”.

Niamey said on Monday that it accepted the mediation offer from its Algerian neighbour, recalling however that the duration of the transition to a civilian regime would only be set by an inclusive national forum. The terms of this offer have not been made public.

ECOWAS, for its part, was careful not to comment on the possibility of accepting a transitional period during which the military would remain in power before returning it to civilians.

Niger is also subject to very heavy sanctions, particularly economic, from ECOWAS, which suspended Niamey from its governing bodies, just like Mali, Guinea and Burkina Faso, since they have been ruled by them. also by putschist soldiers.

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