Niger ends military pact with Benin over ECOWAS standoff
Niger military government has ended a military accord with neighboring Benin, accusing the West African country of authorising the deployment of ECOWAS troops on its territory for a possible military intervention against Niger.
The ECOWAS bloc is trying to negotiate with the leaders of the July 26 Niger military takeover, but has said if diplomatic efforts fail it is ready to use force as a last resort to restore the ousted government.
Thousands of people in Niger have protested in the capital Niamey to express support for the military government and demand the withdrawal of French troops and diplomats from the West African country.
The military takeover in Niger came amid a growing wave of anti-French sentiments, with the people of Niger accusing the European country of interfering in their affairs.
Since the takeover, people in Niger have on several occasions come out in force to display support for the military leaders and reject former Western-backed authorities.