Thursday, May 23, 2024

Niger coup leaders refuse to meet ECOWAS-AU-UN mediation team

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Staff Writer
Staff Writer
Africa Feeds Staff writers are group of African journalists focused on reporting news about the continent and the rest of the world.

Niger coup leaders have refused to meet with a mediation team put together by the West African regional body, ECOWAS, the African Union and the United nation.

The mediation team was to travel to Niger on Tuesday for talks but the junta reportedly denied it entry, resisting pressure to negotiate ahead of a summit on Thursday.

“The mission was aborted following a late-night communication from the military authorities in Niger indicating their unavailability to receive the tripartite delegation,” a statement from ECOWAS said.

The rejection of such a diplomatic mission could further escalate tensions as ECOWAS threatens military intervention.

“The planned mission was part of the continued efforts to find a peaceful resolution to the current crisis in Niger,” the ECOWAS statement said.

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ECOWAS leaders will on Thursday will discuss whether to go ahead with the intended possible use of force to restore constitutional rule to Niger.

ECOWAS said it is still open to peaceful resolution of the current crisis in Niger.

“As per the decision of the ECOWAS Extraordinary Summit held on 30 July 2023, the Community will continue to deploy all measures in order to restore constitutional order in Niger,” it said in the statement.

Meanwhile neighbouring Mali and Burkina Faso, also ruled by military juntas, have asked the U.N. Security Council in a letter to prevent any armed action against Niger.

The two countries said such a move threatened by ECOWAS would have “unpredictable” consequences and lead to the break-up of ECOWAS.

“The Transitional Governments of Burkina Faso and the Republic of Mali appeal to the primary responsibility of the Security Council… to use all means at its disposal to prevent armed action against a sovereign state,” the letter signed by both countries’ foreign ministers and posted on X (Twitter) by the Malian foreign ministry read.

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