HomeNewsU.S Withdraws Troops from Niger, Ending Decade-Long Military Presence

U.S Withdraws Troops from Niger, Ending Decade-Long Military Presence

  • The U.S. has completed the first phase of withdrawing its troops and equipment from Niger, including those in Niamey, Agadez, Ouallam and Diffa.
  • The agreement calls for the removal of all American military assets in Niger by September 15.
  • After removing forces and equipment from Air Base 101 in Niamey, the U.S. will focus on withdrawing from Air Base 201 in Agadez.

Newsypeople- The U.S. has finished the first step of taking its troops out of Niger, with all American soldiers and gear leaving a small base in Niamey, which is the capital, this weekend.

Less than 500 remaining troops will leave an important drone base in Agadez by August before the September 15 deadline agreed upon with Niger’s new ruling government group.

U.S Withdraws Troops from Niger, Ending Decade-Long Military Presence
U.S Withdraws Troops from Niger, Ending Decade-Long Military Presence

The withdrawal is happening after many months of discussions between U.S. and Nigerien leaders to plan the removal of American soldiers from the country.

Christopher Maier, who works as assistant secretary of defense for special operations, and Lieutenant General Dagvin Anderson, director for joint force development, had meetings with people from Niger’s National Council for Safeguarding the Homeland (CNSP) in Niamey this week to complete the plans for pulling out troops.

The U.S. and Niger have decided on a step-by-step removal of American troops “as soon as it can be done in next few months,” with safety measures and protections for U.S. soldiers, plus special permissions for leaving flights to make the exit smooth. According to this deal with the new leaders (junta), two out of three parts of U.S. military people and their equipment need to leave Niger by July 26.

U.S Withdraws Troops from Niger, Ending Decade-Long Military Presence
U.S Withdraws Troops from Niger, Ending Decade-Long Military Presence

The withdrawal happens because Niger’s military leaders, who took control in a coup last July, canceled a 2012 agreement with the U.S. about working together militarily.

Problems started when representatives from the U.S. showed worries regarding Niger possibly teaming up with Russia and Iran, and also questioned what would happen to American troops stationed there. The junta said the U.S. was trying to control Niger’s independence by telling it who to work with in fighting terrorism.

In Niger, the U.S. had two military bases: Air Base 101 in Niamey and Air Base 201 in Agadez. These bases are important for watching terror groups nearby. The base in Agadez cost the U.S. $110 million to make and is used mainly for missions against terrorists in the Sahel area. The withdrawal is likely to cause a gap in counterterrorism efforts as security dangers from extremist groups in the area increase.

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