Following the coup d’etat that ousted Niger Republic President, Mohamed Bazoum, the European Union (EU), says it has suspended its budgetary support and security cooperation with the country.
Josep Borrell, EU foreign policy chief, made this known in a statement on Saturday.
The union said it will also support more sanctions on the military government from the Economic Community of West African States(ECOWAS), currently chaired by Nigeria’s President Bola Tinubu.
The EU had earmarked $554 million (₦429,627,000,000) to support Niger’s yearly budget from 2021-2024, according to Reuters.
Recall, this newspaper reported that soldiers known as Presidential Guard (PG) had detained the president, alleging leadership failure of the political class.
The ECOWAS Commission, which is West Africa’s regional bloc, and international partners had urged the coup plotters to free the president without any conditions.
But the coup plotters who eventually got the backing of the rest of the armed forces, announced the overthrow of the Government while closing its borders.
Borrell added that the EU does not recognize and will not recognize the authorities that overthrew the democratic government.
While announcing the suspension of EU’s financial support to Niger (indefinitely), he called on ECOWAS to do the needful in terms of sanctions.
“President Bazoum was democratically elected; he is and therefore remains the only legitimate President of Niger.
“The European Union reiterates its very clear calls for the full and complete restoration, without delay, of constitutional order and fully associates itself with the declarations of ECOWAS and its African and international partners in this regard.
“And we stand ready to support future ECOWAS decisions, including the adoption of sanctions.
“In this regard, in addition to the immediate cessation of budget support, all cooperation actions in the security field are suspended sine die with immediate effect,” he stated.