War looming as Africa Union gives Niger coup leaders 15 days to return to barracks 

The AU’s Peace and Security Council “demands the military personnel to immediately and unconditionally return to their barracks and restore constitutional authority, within a maximum period of fifteen (15) days”, it said in a communique following a meeting Friday on the Niger coup.

It “condemns in the strongest terms possible” the overthrow of the elected government and its president Mohamed Bazoum, and expressed deep concern over the “alarming resurgence” of military coups in Africa.

Recall that the Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Authority of Heads of State and Government, President Bola Tinubu, would host a special meeting of the regional leaders on Sunday, July 30th in Abuja to further put pressure on the coupists to return to the barracks.

This was contained in a statement issued by Dele Alake, Special Adviser to the President on Special Duties, Communications & Strategy.

Alake said President Tinubu, as Chairman of ECOWAS, in a statement he personally signed on Wednesday July 26, 2023, condemned the current political situation in the neighboring country and promised that ECOWAS and the international community would do everything to defend democracy and ensure democratic governance continues to take firm root in the sub-region.

“US Vice President Kamala Harris and United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in separate telephone calls Thursday evening with President Tinubu affirmed the support of the US and UN for the position taken by ECOWAS and the Nigerian leader to restore constitutional order in Niger,” he added.

Soldiers in the West African country of Niger had announced a coup on national TV on Wednesday and had dissolved the constitution, suspended all institutions and closed the nation’s borders.