Two days before the inauguration of the new president, a coup attempt took place in Sahel, Niger. Conspiracy attempts were quickly curtailed Wednesday night. Residents in the area around the presidential palace in the capital, Niamey, said they had been aroused by gunfire from heavy and light weapons. Security sources said those involved in the “conspiracy attempt” had been arrested.
The army, which was involved in the coup attempt, could not reach the presidential palace because security guards reportedly opened fire on them. The situation is “under control”. There was talk of a “small coup attempt” in the circle of elected President Mohammed Fazlum, which was soon put down.
Security forces searched the area around the presidential palace on Wednesday. There are no differences compared to other days in the city center of Niamey. The U.S. embassy suspended its diplomatic activities until further notice and recommended that U.S. citizens remain at home. The French embassy advised its citizens not to leave their homes. Austria has only one honorary embassy in Niamey.
Former President-elect Mahamane Usmane has called for peaceful protests against Basum’s victory in the February presidential election. There have been a number of attacks on civilians in Niger in recent weeks. At least 300 people have been killed since the start of the year.