December 3, 2023

Niger junta flays UN chief for obstructing delegate from participating at General Assembly

The Nigerien military junta has condemned the United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres of “obstructing” the West African nation’s full participation at the U.N.’s annual meeting of world leaders in New York.

The junta said the move to stop the envoy from Niamey from taking active participation at the event was an attempt to please France, Niger’s former colonizer, and its allies.

Commenting on the event that played out in New York, Col. Maj. Amadou Abdramane, a spokesman for the military men who removed Nigerien President Mohamed Bazoum in a July coup, stressed that the decision to prevent the junta’s envoy from speaking at the U.N. General Assembly could “undermine any effort to end the crisis in our country.”

The junta spokesman accused the former minister, Hassoumi Massoudou, of “high treason” and alleged that Guterres’ only interest was “keeping with the determination of France and the European Union to punish Niger and its people at all costs for their patriotic choice.” Abdramane also accused the West African regional bloc ECOWAS of needless intervention.

“With the complicity of France and the two French-speaking heads of state of ECOWAS, the secretary general of the United Nations went astray in the exercise of his mission by obstructing the full participation of Niger in the work of the 78th Session of the U.N. General Assembly,” Abdramane said.

Recall that the deposed president of Niger, Mohamed Bazoum appealed to the regional ECOWAS court to sanction his release and reinstatement as president.

ECOWAS has said it considers a military intervention an option for restoring the deposed president should diplomatic moves fail.

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