Protesters in Niger call for departure of French troops

Demonstration organized in capital by civil society organizations operating under umbrella of M62 movement

Fatma Esma Arslan  | 19.09.2022 - Update : 19.09.2022
Protesters in Niger call for departure of French troops

DAKAR, Senegal

Hundreds of Nigeriens took to the streets of the capital Niamey on Sunday to protest against the presence of French troops in the country.

During the protest, which was organized by civil society organizations operating under the umbrella of the M62 movement, they marched from Toumo Square to the National Assembly.

Protesting the cost of living at the same time, they chanted slogans against the French army stationed in Niger.

Carrying Russian flags, the protesters also held banners saying “French army get out.”

In August this year, France pulled the last of its troops out of Mali, bringing the country's Operation Barkhane to an end.

"This day at 1.00 p.m. (1300GMT), the last detachment of the Barkhane force present on Malian soil crossed the border between Mali and Niger," said a press release by the Ministry of the Armed Forces, announcing the end of the nine-year military presence with 2,400 soldiers stationed in the North African country.

France then made Niger its new hub for its troops, with close to a thousand soldiers based in Niamey.

After Operation Serval, which was launched in 2013, Barkhane was France's second military initiative in the Sahel, a region in Africa that includes Mali, Niger, Mauritania, Senegal, Guinea, Burkina Faso, Chad, Nigeria and Cameroon.

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