Niger Revokes US Military Accord: Russia and the Sahel

Niger Revokes US Military Accord: Russia and the Sahel

Kanako Mita and Chika Yoshida

Modern Tokyo Times

Niger notified America that the military accord was revoked based on ill will and seeking to impose on its foreign policy. Similar to Burkina Faso and Mali, the military elites of Niger first turned against France – and now Niger is moving closer to the Russian Federation and rejecting diktats from the administration of President Joe Biden.

Recent talks with Molly Phee (Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs) and General Michael Langley (Commander of U.S. Africa Command) failed to build bridges.

Colonel Amadou Abdramane of Niger said, “Niger regrets the intention of the American delegation to deny the sovereign Nigerien people the right to choose their partners and types of partnerships capable of truly helping them fight against terrorism.”

The above concerns the growing ties between the Russian Federation and Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger.

Colonel Amadou Abdramane also said, “The US presence on the territory of the Republic of Niger is illegal and violates all the constitutional and democratic rules which would require the sovereign people… to be consulted on the installation of a foreign army on its territory.”

He continued, “…the government of Niger forcefully denounces the condescending attitude accompanied by the threat of retaliation from the head of the American delegation towards the Nigerien government and people.” 

The BBC reports, “In 2016, the US began investing around $100m (£79m) in a drone base in the central city of Agadez, 750km (460 miles) north-east of Niamey. It was used for surveillance and targeting of Islamic State and al-Qaeda-linked militants operating in the wider Sahel region.”

The drone base since 2018 targeted Islamic terrorist groups in the Sahel region – notably ISIS (Islamic State) and Jama’at Nusrat al-Islam wal Muslimeen (affiliate of al Qaeda).

In 2023, approximately 1,100 American troops were operating two bases in Niger.

The Guardian reports (embarrassingly for America), “Apart from the Agadez airbase, the US has invested years and hundreds of millions of dollars in training Niger’s military. Some of those forces were involved in the July overthrow of Niger’s democratically elected president, Mohamed Bazoum.”

Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger need to strengthen intelligence areas, the utilization of drones, and counterinsurgency areas in their collective fight against Islamic terrorism.

Lee Jay Walker (Modern Tokyo Times analyst) says, “If America, ECOWAS, the European Union, and G7 disengage from the Sahel region – China, Iran, the Russian Federation, and Turkey will utilize this geopolitical vacuum.”

Economic sanctions on Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger – and military disengagement – will only assist Islamic terrorist forces throughout the fragile Sahel region that is blighted by Islamic terrorism.

Also, economic angles will lead to growing poverty and mass immigration for the people of the Sahel region who are desperate for work. Henceforth, it is incumbent on nations to listen to these three nations rather than seeking to dictate.

Modern Tokyo News is part of the Modern Tokyo Times group Modern Tokyo Times – International News and Japan News – Sawako Utsumi’s website and Modern Tokyo Times artist Modern Tokyo News – Tokyo News and International News