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France rejects Niger coup leaders’ ultimatum to expel ambassador


France has refused to comply with the ultimatum issued by the coup leaders in Niger, who demanded that the French ambassador in Niamey, Sylvain Itte, leave the country within 48 hours.

France said that the coup leaders had no authority to make such a request and that the ambassador’s presence was only subject to the approval of the legitimate elected authorities of Niger.

However, France dismissed the appeal as illegitimate and said it was constantly evaluating its embassy’s security and operating conditions.


The putschists do not have the authority to make this request, the ambassador’s approval coming solely from the legitimate elected Nigerien authorities.” We are constantly evaluating the security and operating conditions of our embassy.” A statement from the French ministry read


The coup leaders had accused the French ambassador of ignoring a ministerial summons and taking actions contrary to Niger’s interests. They had given him until Sunday to vacate the nation.


France has been a long-standing ally of Niger, a former French colony, and has deployed troops and aircraft in the country to combat Islamist militants in the Sahel region.