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African Union suspends Niger Republic

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Following the removal and ongoing arrest of President Mohammed Bazoum, who was toppled by military coups on July 26, 2023, the African Union announced the suspension of the Niger Republic.

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An announcement made on Tuesday made this disclosure public.

The AU reaffirmed calls for the coup leaders to reestablish democracy in Niger and return to their barracks in a statement.

The AU urged its members to refrain from portraying measures that would give the junta’s conduct in Niger legal standing and the rest of the world.

The statement

The declaration also forbade intervention from any party or nation outside of Africa. Until the nation’s successful restoration of constitutional order, they immediately suspend Niger’s participation in all AU activities, organizations, and institutions.

Furthermore, the council vehemently rejected any outside meddling in African peace and security affairs by any actor or country outside the continent.”

The 1977 OAU Convention for the Elimination of Mercenarianism in Africa also bans private military company activities in the continent.

The council also reiterated its prior calls to release Mohamed Bazoum, the legitimately elected President of Niger, who is now being held in captivity due to the coup.

Backstory

Since the Presidential Guard removed the President of the Republic of Niger and named General Tchiani the new head of state, the country has been in a political stalemate.

The Economic Community of West African States has taken the lead in the international condemnation of the coup, declaring that it will use every weapon at its disposal, including military action, to restore the government of President Bazoum.

The government and the ECOWAS team have discussed restoring constitutional democracy to the nation.

A top official at the ECOWAS army chiefs’ meeting declared that “A D-Day has been decided” regarding the organization’s readiness to act in Niger.

The military junta in the nation has reaffirmed its intention to restore constitutional democracy, requesting three years for transition from the international community. ECOWAS rejected the plan.

 

What happens next is still to be determined. ECOWAS and the bigger continental body, the AU, lament the increase in military coups on the continent.

About seven coups d’état have occurred on the continent since 2020, and there are concerns that the one in Niger could spread to other nations if it is not under control.

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