Niger reinforces positions along border with Benin

2023-09-19 13:09:59
Niger reinforces positions along border with Benin

A large crowd greets soldiers as a convoy passes through Gaya, Niger's southern border with Benin. Hooray, hostile slogans against France and the regional bloc ECOWAS can be heard.

After the 15-nation group agreed to activate a guard to intervene in Niger and restore a democratic government by force, Niamey strengthened its positions on the border.

A resident in Gaya said: We are calm and relaxed, he said over the weekend. We have seen this kind of deployment before, I am referring to the years 1963-1964, when there was tension between us and Benin because of the small island issue. So it's a kind of déjà vu, same country and another deployment in Gaya.

The convoy was dispatched on Wednesday, a day after Nigeria terminated a military cooperation agreement with Benin.

The ruling group is at odds with its neighbors over the West African Economic Community.

The deployment of the Nigerian Army in Gaya Division has calmed the residents, including me, said Hamada Oussani, a civil society activist.

Just recently, people were worried when they listened to the news and read on social media that the number of soldiers and military equipment was insufficient. People were convinced that the country had taken all the necessary steps to deal with what was coming next.

Niger's military rulers, who ousted President Bazoumi, have accused Benin of deploying troops and ammunition for aggression, which they say France is seeking in cooperation with some ECOWAS member states.

(Source: Agencies)


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