Tuesday, July 23, 2024

US military leaves Niamey base


The U.S. and Niger announced that the withdrawal of U.S. troops from the Niamey base in Niger ended on Sunday, July 7. The withdrawal will be carried out between now and September 15 by forces based in Agadez in the north of the country, in line with the demands of the ruling military regime.

“The Ministry of National Defense of the Republic of Niger and the United States Department of Defense announce that the withdrawal of US forces and equipment from Niamey Air Base 101 is now complete”Both countries indicated in a joint statement. “Thanks to effective cooperation and communication between the Nigerian and US armed forces, the operation was completed ahead of schedule and without any issues”They clarified.

The final flight with the soldiers from the Niamey base was scheduled to depart at midnight Paris time. 766 US soldiers have left Niger to date, the US Department of Defense learned in a ceremony organized at the site in the presence of Niger Army Chief of Staff Colonel Maman Sani Kyaw and General Kenneth Eckman.

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US forces in Niger were estimated to total 950 elements. Additionally, six aircraft — two Raptor helicopters and four drones — as well as 1,593 tons of equipment have departed the Sahel country since May.

Niger’s foreign policy reviewed from top to bottom

“US forces will now focus on the withdrawal of Air Base 201 located in Agadez. Nigerian and US officials are committed to ensuring a safe, orderly and responsible withdrawal by September”Both countries elaborated further in their press release.

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The United States fought in Niger against jihadists who continued to carry out bloody attacks. In Agadez, they have a large drone base. In March, officials in Niamey denounced a military cooperation agreement that tied them to the United States, and the process began two months later.

After the July 26, 2023 coup that toppled President Mohamed Bassum, the Nigerian military regime insists it wants to fundamentally review its foreign policy and prioritize its sovereignty.

French soldiers fighting against the jihadists were the first to be evacuated from the end of 2023. At the same time, Niamey moved closer to Russia, carrying instructors and military equipment in April and May. The country has moved closer to its neighbors Burkina Faso and Mali, and is governed by military regimes, with whom the “Confederation of Sahel States” has been formed.

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The world with AFP

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