Niger has officially canceled its military agreement with Benin. The leaders of the coup allege that Benin violated the agreement by permitting France to station troops on its territory for a potential attack.
The military government in Niger has declared the termination of its military cooperation deal with Benin. They accuse their West African neighbor of supporting an impending cross-border invasion.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, the new rulers of Niamey asserted that the Beninese government had given authorization for the deployment of troops, “mercenaries, and war materials, with the intention of an attack desired by France” and “certain” nations within the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) against Niger.
ECOWAS, with the support of France, has threatened military intervention in Niger in response to the coup that removed President Mohamed Bazoum from power on July 26th.
General Abdourahamane Tchiani, the leader of the coup, has resisted the regional authority’s demand for the reinstatement of Bazoum and instead declared a three-year transition period.
The military government has repeatedly accused France of plotting an armed attack in Niger to reinstate the ousted president, whom the French government recognizes as the African country’s sole “legitimate” leader.
Colonel Amadou Abdramane, the government’s spokesperson in Niamey, stated on Saturday that Paris continues to deploy troops to several ECOWAS countries in preparation for an intervention in Niger.
The coup leaders alleged that French authorities deployed two military helicopters and 40 armored vehicles in Benin.
On Tuesday, the military rulers stated that the Beninese government’s decision to support “aggression” against Niger, while Niger is grappling with a challenging “security, political, and economic situation,” rather than opposing intervention, constitutes a violation of the military pact signed in July of the previous year.
As a result, the coup leaders announced that Niamey has chosen to terminate the pact after expressing a desire to prevent escalation and repeatedly calling for adherence to the agreement’s obligations.
The statement also noted that “diplomatic correspondence will be sent to the Beninese authorities, following the appropriate procedure.”
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