US agrees to withdraw troops from Niger News
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US agrees to withdraw troops from Niger

The US agreed to withdraw American troops from Niger, the two countries said in a joint statement on Sunday.

“The U.S. Department of Defense and the Ministry of National Defense of Niger have reached a disengagement agreement to effect the withdrawal of U.S. forces, which has already begun,” the statement said. It continued, “It is therefore agreed that this disengagement will end no later than September 15, 2024.” It went on to confirmed the countries’ ongoing commitment to develop bilateral relations, and to continue to cooperate in areas of common interest.

Representatives from the two countries met from May 15 to 19 in Niamey, Niger, as part of a Joint Disengagement Commission. According to the joint statement, disengagement will be facilitated by established procedures, including overflight and landing clearances for military flights. Both delegations guaranteed the protection and security of the American forces during their disengagement.

The United States has relied on Niger as its primary base for monitoring and countering jihadist activity. The agreement will see around 1,000 troops withdraw, yet another domino in a chain of recent changes following a coup of former Niger President Mohamed Bazoum’s administration in July last year. The withdrawal follows a similar agreement from France, whose troops withdrew in December 2023 after a wave of protests and the request of the military Junta.

In March, Niger spokesman Colonel Amadou Abdramane denounced the country’s military accord with the United States, citing concerns over interference with Niger’s sovereignty.