Breaking: Junta ignores ECOWAS threat, makes more arrests of Niamey politicians
The military junta in Niger has escalated its actions by detaining three additional senior politicians from the ousted government on Monday, defying international calls for the restoration of democratic rule.
As the turmoil extends beyond the streets to the markets, sources revealed that the regional central bank has cancelled Niger’s planned 30 billion CFA ($51 million) bond issuance, which was scheduled for Monday in the West African regional debt market, following sanctions.
The junta’s takeover of power and the ousting of elected President Mohamed Bazoum have drawn condemnation from the African Union, the U.N., the European Union, and other global powers. It marks the seventh military takeover in less than three years in West and Central Africa, sparking concerns about the stability of the Sahel region. Countries like the United States and France, which have troops in Niger, have been collaborating with the previous government in combating militant forces linked to Islamic State and al Qaeda.
The coup also raises Western concerns due to Niger’s status as the world’s seventh-largest uranium producer, a crucial metal for nuclear energy and cancer treatment.
The military junta arrested the former government’s mines minister, the head of the ruling party, and oil minister Mahamane Sani Mahamadou, who is also the son of former president Issoufou Mahamadou, as confirmed by the Nigerien Party for Democracy and Socialism (PNDS-Tarayya). Prior to this, the interior minister, transport minister, and a deputy had already been detained.
The party denounced the arrests, highlighting the “repressive and dictatorial” nature of the coup leaders and urging citizens to unite to protect democracy.
The detentions were announced shortly after Chadian President Mahamat Idriss Deby arrived in Niger to mediate between the coup leaders and the ousted government. Deby posted photos of Bazoum, showing him unharmed and smiling, as part of his efforts to find a peaceful resolution to the crisis.