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ECOWAS threatens force, sanctions against Niger coup leaders

ECOWAS leaders have threatened sanctions and the possible use of force against Niger’s coup leaders if they fail to reinstate ousted President Mohammed Bazoum.

The West African leaders held an emergency meeting in Abuja, Nigeria on Sunday where they settled on punitive measures against Niger’s new military leaders.

The coup leaders could face financial and travel sanctions and a no-fly zone if they fail to comply with ECOWAS directive.

But in the meantime ECOWAS has announced the “closure of land and air borders between ECOWAS countries and Niger; Institution of ECOWAS no-fly zone on all commercial flights to and from Niger.”

There is also the “suspension of all commercial and financial transactions between ECOWAS Member States and Niger… travel ban and asset freeze for the military officials involved in the coup attempt.

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The same applies to their family members and the civilians who accept to participate in any institutions or government established by these military officials.”

ECOWAS defence chiefs are also expected to meet amid the declaration of intent to use military action as a possibility.

In a communique, the leaders also condemn the support for the coup from some foreign nations and military contractors.

Meanwhile Chadian President Mahamat Idriss Deby is reported to have volunteered to speak to the military leaders in Niger and report back to Nigerian President Bola Tinubu, the chairman of West African regional bloc ECOWAS.

Deby met Tinubu on the sidelines of the emergency ECOWAS summit in Nigerian capital Abuja.

“The President of Chad at the bilateral meeting volunteered to go and talk to the junta in Niger and report back,” a presidency source told Reuters.

Niger: Soldiers overthrow President Bazoum in a coup


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