Tens of thousands of demonstrators gathered in front of the French military base in Niger’s capital. They are protesting the existence of the old colonizer and want the French forces to leave the country.
Since the coup d’état over a month ago, there has been strong anti-French sentiment in Niger. Supporters of the putschists demonstrated several times against the former colonizer in front of the French embassy and a military base.
The French government does not recognize the new junta and wants the former president reinstated. After the coup, France (like the rest of the European Union) stopped development aid in Niger and ended economic cooperation with the country.
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Anti-French sentiment increased
Over the past week, anti-French sentiment in Niger has reached an all-time high. The new Nigerian foreign minister had ordered the French ambassador to leave the country within 48 hours, but he ignored this order.
Reporters from the news agency said that the gathering at the military base in the capital, Niamey, is the largest demonstration against the French since the coup. Reuters.
Reports indicate that this indicates that support for the military council is not waning ReutersAs well as the aversion to the influence that the former colonizer still enjoys in Niger.
During the protests, a goat dressed in French clothing had its throat cut on Saturday. Protesters also marched with empty coffins bearing the French flag. Others held banners calling on the French to leave the country.
‘They plundered our resources’
“They looted our resources and we are aware of that. So now they have to go,” said one protester. Reuters. Niger has about 7% of the world’s uranium supplies. France in particular obtained (on the cheap) much of this raw material from the country.
France has about 1,500 soldiers in the country. Western forces stationed in Mali and Burkina Faso to fight the jihadists were forced to leave after the coups of the past two years. Many troops have been transferred to neighboring Niger, but now that country also wants the former colonizer’s forces to leave.
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