In the past two weeks, the news of Niger coups has taken over the headlines. Niger is a landlocked nation country that shared with Nigeria to the south.

Here are five things to know about the Niger Coup

Coup masterminded on the 26th of July

The Niger’s armed forces staged a coup to oust the democratically-elected government on the 26th of July. The coup was masterminded by General Abdourahamane Tchiani‘s who was President Muhammad Bazoum’s commander of the presidential guards. The junta was formally known as the National Council for the Safeguarding of the Homeland.

African Union intervention

Disgusted by the military junta in Niger, the African Union issued a statement on the 28th of July. In the statement, the league of African leaders’ Peace and Security Council demanded “the military personnel to immediately and unconditionally return to their barracks and restore constitutional authority, within a maximum period of 15 days.” This statement didn’t deter the junta men, however.

ECOWAS first intervention

The Economic Community of West African States delved into the matter and the result was direct. The body, now chaired by Nigerian president, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, fiercely issued a 15-day ultimatum to the junta men at Niger. It further announced that “in the event the authorities’ demands are not met within one week (ECOWAS will) take all measures necessary to restore constitutional order in the Republic of Niger. Such measures may include the use of force. For this effect, the chiefs of defence staff of ECOWAS are to meet immediately.” In addition to this is ECOWAS’ suspension of all forms of transactions between Niger and ECOWAS states.

ECOWAS second intervention

Upon expiry of the ultimate, the leaders of ECOWAS seemed to have exhausted all the options “off the table.” As a result, the statement states the body “direct the committee of the Chief of Defence Staff to activate the ECOWAS stand-by force with all its elements immediately. Order the deployment of the ECOWAS stand-by force to restore constitutional order in the Republic of Niger. Underscore its continued commitment to the restoration of constitutional order through peaceful means.”

US, Russia divided

While the United Nations joins ECOWAS in solidarity for restoration of peace in Niger, Russia have warned that against military intervention by ECOWAS. In a statement issued on Friday, the United States Secretary of States, Anthony Blinken, “The United States joins the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in calling for the restoration of constitutional order in Niger.”

On the other hand, Russia believe that “a military solution to the crisis in Niger could lead to a protracted confrontation in that African country, and to a sharp destabilisation of the situation in the Sahara-Sahel region as a whole.”

It remains to be seen what unfolds next in the coming days.

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