NIGER: Niger’s ousted leader has urged the US and “entire international community” to help “restore… constitutional order” after last week’s coup.
In an opinion piece in the Washington Post, President Mohamed Bazoum said he was writing “as a hostage”.
He also warned that the region could fall further under Russian influence, via the Wagner Group which already operates in neighbouring countries.
Niger’s West African neighbours have threatened military intervention.
On Thursday, the coup leaders announced they were withdrawing the country’s ambassadors from France, the US, Nigeria and Togo.
In a statement read out on national television, they said the functions of the four ambassadors had been “terminated”.
Only hours before, Niger’s ambassador to the US, Kiari Liman-Tinguiri, told AFP news agency that the junta “should come to reason” and “realise that this affair cannot succeed”.
Niger is a significant uranium producer – a fuel that is vital for nuclear power – and under Mr Bazoum was a key Western ally in the fight against Islamist militants in West Africa’s Sahel region.