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French forces leave Niger – Skanska Dagbladet

French forces leave Niger – Skanska Dagbladet

Since the military junta in Niger overthrew Nigerien President Mohamed Bazoum in a coup at the end of last July, tensions between the two countries have increased. France has about 1,500 soldiers in the country helping the pro-Western Bazoum in the fight against jihadists.

We were, at the request of Niger, Burkina Faso and Mali, on their lands to fight terrorism. These countries have suffered from coups d’état. This afternoon I spoke with President Bazoum, who is currently imprisoned for undertaking ambitious reforms, says Macron in an interview with TF1.

Burkina Faso and Mali are also governed by military juntas. The boards of the three countries announced earlier in September that they intend to join a new defense alliance, AES.

The withdrawal of the military presence begins immediately and must be completed by the end of the year.

We will continue to help the African continent combat terrorism. But only if they come from democratically elected governments, Macron says.

Niger is following in Mali’s footsteps, after the country’s ruling military junta last year asked France to withdraw the forces present in the country. At the end of 2022, the eight-year counter-terrorism operation, Operation Barkhane, which France led with five African countries as well as former French colonies in the Sahel region: Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger, ended. .

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