Burkina Faso: Mali, Burkina Faso Pledge Assistance to Niger Junta

Niger's military junta announced Friday that Burkina Faso and Mali have pledged their support to the coup leaders, who took power in Niger last month, and offered military assistance should Niger be attacked.

At a news conference in Niger's capital, Niamey, the deputy secretary-general of the Niger Foreign Ministry, Oumarou Ibrahim Sidi, said the three countries signed an agreement "for mutual assistance in matters of defense and security in the event of aggression or terrorist attack."

Sidi said Burkina Faso Foreign Minister Olivia Rouamba and her counterpart from Mali, Abdoulaye Diop, were in Niger on Thursday and signed the agreement with Niger's president of the National Council for the Safeguarding of the Motherland, Brigadier General Abdrahamane Tchiani.

Sidi said the agreement authorizes the defense and security forces of Burkina Faso and Mali to "intervene in Nigerien territory in the event of aggression."

Last week, members of the Economic Community of West African States announced they had agreed to use military force to restore democratic rule to Niger should diplomatic efforts fail.

Members of Niger's presidential guard deposed President Mohamed Bazoum on July 26 and have held him and his family under house arrest since then.

Niger is the fourth nation in West Africa since 2020 to suffer a coup, following Burkina Faso, Guinea and Mali.

The juntas in Burkina Faso and Mali have said that any military intervention of their neighbor would be considered a "declaration of war" against their countries.

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