Coup in Niger
The Niger military declared support for a group of soldiers claiming to have seized power from President Mohamed Bazoum, prompting protests by hundreds of supporters on both sides. The president remains defiant, and his foreign minister denies any support for the coup, which has closed the nation's land borders.
The coup in the West African country was initiated when soldiers, allegedly led by Gen. Omar Tchiani, stormed the presidential palace and ousted Bazoum from power, citing deteriorating security in the country. Bazoum, who was democratically elected in 2021, is a key ally of the West in the battle against Islamist forces in West Africa. Other countries in the Sahel region, including Mali and Burkina Faso, have sought support from Russia's Wagner mercenary group.
It was not immediately clear who will assume power in the country. The attempt comes amid a rise in coups in Africa and is the fifth successful attempt in Niger since it gained independence from France in 1960. See a timeline here.