Nigeria calls on Niger to release Mohamed Bazoum

Nigeria calls on Niger to release Mohamed Bazoum

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Published on December 3, 2023

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“We ask them to free Mohamed Bazoum so that he can leave Niger, indicated the Nigerian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Yusuf Tuggar, to the local TV channel Channels Television, in an interview broadcast on Sunday December 3 on his website. Il will [then] no longer be in detention. He will travel to a mutually agreed third country. And then we will start talking about lifting sanctions. »

“Nothing bad will happen” to Bazoum

Since he was overthrown on July 26 by un coup military state led by General Abdourahamane Tiani, Mohamed Bazoum is held in his presidential residence in Niamey with his wife and son. The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) had threatened to intervene militarily to restore President Bazoum in her duties – which she did not do – and imposed heavy economic and financial sanctions against Niger.

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“The opportunity is there. We are always ready and willing to listen to them, the ball is in their court, stressed Yusuf Tuggar.

Interviewed on the BBC in Hausa language, the Prime Minister appointed by the regime in Niger, Ali Mahaman Lamine Zeine, assured that “nothing bad will happen” to Mohamed Bazoum. “Of all the coups that have occurred in Niger, never il "There was no question of transferring [the deposed president] to a foreign country," he recalled, citing previous presidents overthrown in this country which has experienced five putsches since its independence in 1960.

“When the time for his release comes, he will be released”

" Who said it won't one day be released? He is detained in his presidential residence, his health is well taken care of, when the time for his release comes, he will be released,” continued Ali Mahaman Lamine Zeine. Family members du ousted president claimed Thursday that they had not heard from Mohamed Bazoum since October 18 and denounced “abusive arrests and searches” targeting some of them.

ECOWAS leaders are due to meet on December 10 in the Nigerian capital Abuja for discuss the situation in the region, where since 2020, the military has taken power through coups in Mali, Burkina Faso, Guinea and Niger. At the end of November, an attempted coup d'état in Sierra Leone, member of the ECOWAS, left 21 dead. And Saturday, Umaro Sissoco Embaló, President of Guinea-Bissau, denounced an “attempted coup d’état” after clashes between the army and elements of the security forces which caused at least two people dead.

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(With AFP)

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