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May 20, 2024

AU gives Niger coup leader 15 days to hand over power

The African Union has demanded the military in Niger “return to their barracks and restore constitutional authority” within 15 days after grabbing power in a coup.

The AU’s Peace and Security Council “demands the military personnel to immediately and unconditionally return to their barracks and restore constitutional authority, within a maximum period of 15 days”, it said in a communique following a meeting Friday on the Niger coup.

Soldiers from the Presidential Guard have detained President Mohamed Bazoum in the presidential palace since Wednesday and announced that they had removed him from power.

International pressure has been growing on the coup leaders to release the president and to restore constitutional order. But the military has warned of “consequences that will follow any foreign military intervention.”

The European Union on Saturday said it would not recognise the military junta and had suspended its financial support and cooperation on security with Niger with immediate effect.

General Abdourahamane Tchiani, who staged the coup, has declared himself the new leader of the West African nation.

In an appearance on state television on Friday, he presented the coup as a response to “the degradation of the security situation” linked to attacks by armed groups.


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