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French Ambassador Flees Niger as Tensions Escalate

French Ambassador Flees Niger as Tensions Escalate

French Ambassador Flees Niger as Tensions Escalate

French Ambassador Flees Niger as Tensions Escalate

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  • French ambassador to Niger, Sylvain Itte, has returned to Paris.
  • The Niger military junta had ordered Itte to depart the country and revoked his visa.
  • Niger currently hosts approximately 1,500 French troops.
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On Wednesday, the French Foreign Ministry informed the media that Sylvain Itte, the French ambassador to Niger, has come back to Paris.

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“Our ambassador to Niger returned to Paris today, as decided by the President of the Republic on Sunday,” the ministry said.

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As per the ministry’s statement, French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna welcomed Sylvain Itte and his team back to Paris and expressed gratitude for their dedicated service under challenging circumstances.

France’s President, Emmanuel Macron, announced on Sunday that several diplomats, including Itte, were being recalled from Niger.

Following a coup in July, the Niger military junta had initially ordered Itte to depart the country and subsequently revoked his visa.

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In defiance of the junta’s authority, the ambassador remained in his post, as directed by the French government. Macron recently stated that the ambassador was effectively confined at the French embassy in Niamey, the capital, with limited access to essential supplies.

Relations between the two nations have deteriorated since the coup, and Sylvain Itte’s departure from Niger coincides with France’s decision to conclude its military presence in the West African country by the end of this year.

Niger currently hosts approximately 1,500 French troops, many of whom are involved in counterterrorism operations.

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