The United Kingdom has called for the immediate release of the deposed President Mohamed Bazoum of Niger.
In a statement issued on Wednesday by Atinuke Akande-Alegbe, a senior communications officer at the British High Commission, the UK condemned the illegal detention of Bazoum by the junta.
General Abdourahamane Tchiani led the military personnel to topple the government on July 26, and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has vowed to invade Niger if the junta fails to restore democratic order and release Bazoum.
Speaking against the coup, the UK said, “We stand with ECOWAS in condemnation of the illegal detention of President Mohamed Bazoum, his family, and members of the government, as well as the unacceptable conditions under which they are being held, and call for their immediate release.”
According to the statement, the UK recognises Nigeria’s diplomatic efforts to restore democracy in Niger, through its membership of ECOWAS, and condemned the coup against Niger’s elected leadership.
The statement disclosed that the UK’s Minister for the Armed Forces, James Heappey MP, on Wednesday, met with Nigerian defence leaders and military chiefs to discuss the situation in Niger.
He also met with the President of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Commission, where he reiterated the UK’s support for ECOWAS’ ongoing diplomatic efforts to ensure a peaceful return to democracy in Niger.
“The UK and Nigerian armed forces have a longstanding partnership through which we continue to tackle violent extremism and other security threats in West Africa and the Gulf of Guinea.
“The UK supports ECOWAS in calling for the peaceful restoration of constitutional order and democracy in Niger and we’ll work with both ECOWAS and our partners across West Africa to support them in that aim,” Heappey said.
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