Written by Valentina Ruaro
Edited by Miguel Andres Reyes Castro
Supervised by Paul Dybjer
On the night of 25 July and 26, Niger experienced a coup which resulted in the arrest of President Bazoum by Chief Abdourahmane Tchiani, the leader of the National Council for the Safeguard of the Nation (CSNP) military junta, who claimed legitimate executive and legislative power in the country (Istituto per gli Studi di Politica Internazionale [ISPI], 2023). Located in the Sahel region, Niger shares borders with Algeria and Libya to the north, Chad to the east, Nigeria and Benin to the south, and Burkina Faso and Mali to the west (Fuglestad & Laya, 2023).
The Sahel region has been grappling with a profound and intricate crisis driven by a combination of factors such as jihadist movements, state instability, climate crises, criminal networks and social unrest (Walther, 2017). This crisis in the Sahel began in 2011 with an armed insurrection in northern Mali, which subsequently affected neighbouring countries like Niger and Burkina Faso (Walther, 2017). These regional security crises led to the establishment in 2013 of the French military mission, Operation Barkhane, to restore stability (Walther, 2017). However, the mission officially ended in 2022, representing a failure in France’s strategy in maintaining stability in the Sahel region (Doxsee et al., 2022).