UK expresses support for ECOWAS' efforts to resolve crisis in Niger
Foreign Office demands ‘immediate release’ of President Mohamed Bazoum, his family, members of government
By Burak Bir
LONDON (AA) - Britain voiced support Friday for diplomatic efforts by regional countries to resolve the crisis in Niger after a coup overthrew the civilian government.
"The United Kingdom supports the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in calling for the restoration of constitutional order and democracy in Niger," the Foreign Office said in a statement.
Reiterating that the UK stands in support of democracy in Niger, the statement welcomed the "determination of ECOWAS" to pursue all means to bring about a peaceful resolution.
"We stand with ECOWAS in condemnation of the illegal detention of President Mohamed Bazoum, his family, and members of the government, as well as the unacceptable conditions under which they are being held, and call for their immediate release," it added.
Leaders in the ECOWAS bloc said Thursday that they would "keep all options on the table" for a peaceful resolution to the crisis and ordered the activation of an ECOWAS standby force to restore constitutional order in Niger.
President Mohamed Bazoum was ousted July 26 in a military coup led by Gen. Abdourahamane Tchiani, the former commander of Niger's presidential guard.
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