U.S. engages Niger on security concerns amid Russia, Iran relations

In a significant diplomatic move, a U.S. delegation met with officials in Niger to discuss concerns over the nation’s evolving relationships with Russia and Iran, alongside the status of U.S. forces stationed there, Deputy Pentagon Press Secretary Sabrina Singh disclosed in a media briefing today. The delegation, led by notable figures including Marine Corps Gen. Michael Langley of U.S. Africa Command, engaged in comprehensive talks with Nigerien Prime Minister Ali Lamine Zeine and other high-ranking officials, aiming to navigate a path towards renewed cooperation while acknowledging Niger’s sovereignty.

Amidst these discussions, Singh highlighted the U.S. Defense Department’s attention to Niger’s March 16 announcement, signaling the termination of the status of forces agreement with the United States, indicating a shift in the two nations’ military collaboration. Efforts to seek clarification through diplomatic avenues are underway, with the outcome of these talks remaining pivotal.

The delegation’s visit, encompassing meetings with various stakeholders from civil society, technical fields, and international representatives, underscores the U.S.’s commitment to engaging Niger during a critical juncture in its political landscape. This comes in the wake of a military coup on July 26, which saw the displacement of President Mohamed Bazoum and the installment of a military junta, raising questions about the future of U.S.-Niger relations and regional stability.–Web Desk