Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

Niger Cancels Military Cooperation Agreement with US

Sun 17 Mar 2024 | 04:40 PM
Israa Farhan

The ruling military council in Niger announced on Saturday the cancellation of a military agreement with the United States that allowed American forces to be present within the country's territory, effective immediately.

The statement was posted by the ruling military council's account on the "X" platform, stating that "the National Council for the Protection of the Nation has decided to officially cancel the military cooperation agreements that bind the country with the United States of America."

The statement quoted military council spokesperson Amadou Abdulrahman as saying that the council "announces with full responsibility the immediate cancellation of the agreement related to the presence of American military personnel and civilian employees of the US Department of Defense on the territory of the Republic of Niger."

This decision comes following a visit this week by US officials led by Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Molly Fee, accompanied by General Michael Langley, the commander of US Africa Command.

Abdulrahman emphasized that the American delegation did not follow diplomatic protocol and did not inform the government of the country of its arrival or agenda.

The United States has about 1,100 soldiers stationed at the two air bases and the embassy in Niamey.

Niger serves as a vital base for the US military in the region, allowing the Pentagon to conduct intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance missions in neighboring conflict zones such as Mali and Burkina Faso.

On September 7, the Pentagon announced it would relocate its forces "as a precautionary measure," by transferring some soldiers from a base in the capital Niamey to a northern airbase in Agadez, following France's announcement of withdrawing its forces from the country.

It is worth noting that on July 27, 2023, military personnel in the Nigerien army announced the ousting of President Mohamed Bazoum, with the National Council for the Protection of the Nation assuming executive and legislative powers, under the presidency of General Abdulrahman Chiani, who took on the role of head of state.