Niger Coup: Ivory Coast, Benin, Senegal ,Nigeria Commit Soldiers For Military Intervention

Several member-countries of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), including Ivory Coast, Republic of Benin, Senegal and Nigeria, have committed troops to the regional bloc’s planned military intervention in the Republic of Niger

This is even as the African Union has declared its support for the ECOWAS push to restore constitutional authority in the French-speaking West African country.

It was gathered that ECOWAS army chiefs will be meeting in the coming days to prepare plans for a possible military intervention in Niger. The meeting is expected to hold in Accra, Ghana next week Saturday.

“One meeting is being planned for next week,” Reuters quoted the ECOWAS spokesperson to have said.

While Benin, Senegal and Nigeria have committed to the intervention in principles without providing details of its deployment, the president of Ivory Coast, Alassane Ouattara, revealed that his country would commit a battalion of 850 to 1,100 men to ECOWAS’ move to restore democratic rule to Niger following lack of success in its diplomatic efforts.

The Nigerian military did not respond to request for comment on the actual number the country is contributing to the ECOWAS standby force. The country has, however, played leading roles in previous interventions in Liberia, Sierra Leone and The Gambia.

Recall that the West African regional bloc after its emergency meeting in Abuja on Thursday ordered its Committee of the Chiefs of Defence Staff to immediately activate its standby force with all its elements.

While the decision of ECOWAS to activate its standby force has been trailed by criticism both in Nigeria and Niger, Army chiefs from member-states like Benin and Senegal corroborated Ouattara’s revelation of commitment from the member-states to the military intervention.

Ouattara had said after the Abuja meeting that aside his country’s deployment, soldiers from Nigeria and Benin would also be deployed.

He said ECOWAS had intervened in African countries in order to restore constitutional order before.

Benin’s army spokesman was quoted to have said on Friday that  they would contribute troops without revealing the number while Senegal had earlier revealed it would contribute troops if there were an intervention.

On their parts, Gambia’s defence minister, Sering Modou Njie and Liberia’s minister of information, Ledgerhood Rennie, said that they had not yet taken a decision to send troops.

Military governments in neighbouring Mali and Burkina Faso, both ECOWAS members, have said they would defend the junta in Niger.

Daily Trust 


Chris Kehinde Nwandu is the Editor In Chief of CKNNEWS || He is a Law graduate and an Alumnus of Lagos State University, Lead City University Ibadan and Nigerian Institute Of Journalism || With over 2 decades practice in Journalism, PR and Advertising, he is a member of several Professional bodies within and outside Nigeria || Member: Institute Of Chartered Arbitrators ( UK ) || Member : Institute of Chartered Mediators And Conciliation || Member : Nigerian Institute Of Public Relations || Member : Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria || Fellow : Institute of Personality Development And Customer Relationship Management || Member and Chairman Board Of Trustees: Guild Of Professional Bloggers of Nigeria

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