By Mohamed Bazoum, President of the Republic of Niger
I am writing this as a hostage. Niger is being attacked by a military junta that is trying to overthrow our democracy, and I am only one of the hundreds of citizens who have been arbitrarily and illegally imprisoned. This coup, launched against my government by a military faction on July 26, has no justification. If it succeeds, it will have devastating consequences for our country, our region and the whole world.
Our government came to power thanks to democratic elections in 2021. Any attempt to overthrow a legitimate government must be fought, and we appreciate the firm and unequivocal condemnations of this cynical effort to undermine Niger’s remarkable progress in democracy. The United States, the African and European Unions and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) have said loud and clear: this coup must stop and the junta must release all those they have illegally arrested.
The conspirators of the coup d’État wrongly claim that they acted to protect Niger’s security. They claim that our war against jihadist terrorists has failed and that my economic and social governance, including partnerships with the United States and Europe, has harmed our country.