demonstration in Agadez to demand “a rapid departure” of American troops

Pending the withdrawal of the Americans the Nigerien authorities continue

In Niger, a demonstration took place in Agadez, a northern city which houses the American base. Several hundred people are demanding the departure of American soldiers, at the call of civil society organizations. The United States agreed on Friday April 19 to withdraw its more than 1,000 soldiers operating in the country, a month after the authorities in Niamey denounced “with immediate effect” the military cooperation agreements with Washington.

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The announced departure of American troops from Niger is seen as a real victory by the numerous demonstrators in Agadez. Due to the governor’s ban on gathering in front of the American military base to avoid any risk of slippage, it was in the city center that the joy of this announced withdrawal was expressed.

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We are happy, more than happy, enthuses Slimane Ibrahim, third vice-president of the regional committee to support the authorities. In the twelve years they have been there, we have not seen any achievements brought to the local population! Even a borehole or a school or something that would allow the Agadez region to develop. So we want them to leave really quickly.

The security of our country must be ensured by the sons of Niger, not a foreign country, and it is not just the Americans, it is all foreign countries. We do not want a foreign military presence on our soil. We want economic partnerships, more economic than military “.

A visit by American officials is expected in the coming days to finalize the withdrawal plan. This announcement comes as Niger received, on April 10, equipment delivered in an Ilyushin transport plane with around a hundred Russian instructors on board. Niger denounced last March the military cooperation agreement signed with the United States in 2012 believing that it had been imposed unilaterally by Washington. Since taking power, the new regime in Niamey has moved closer to Russia like Mali and Burkina Faso.

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