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  • Writer's pictureOlga Nesterova

U.S. Begins Talks on Withdrawal of Forces from Niger Amid Bilateral Negotiations

In a significant diplomatic move, the United States has commenced discussions with the National Committee for Safeguarding the Homeland (CNSP) regarding the orderly withdrawal of U.S. forces from Niger. Scheduled meetings between U.S. officials and CNSP representatives signal a pivotal juncture in the bilateral relationship between the two nations.

On April 25, U.S. Ambassador to Niger Kathleen FitzGibbon and Major General Ken Ekman, Director of Strategy, Engagement, and Programs for U.S. Africa Command, are set to convene in Niamey to initiate talks. These discussions aim to pave the way for a responsible withdrawal process, emphasizing transparency and mutual respect.

Following the initial meeting, Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Low Intensity Conflict Christopher Maier and Lieutenant General Dag Anderson will hold follow-up sessions in Niamey during the week of April 29. These subsequent discussions will focus on coordinating the withdrawal process in alignment with the interests of both parties.

The decision to initiate talks comes after months of dialogue since July 2023, during which efforts to reach a consensus on continuing security cooperation proved unsuccessful. Despite the impasse, the United States acknowledges the CNSP's interest in upholding a strong bilateral relationship.

Looking ahead, Deputy Secretary of State Kurt M. Campbell is slated to visit Niamey in the coming months to engage in further discussions on collaboration in areas of mutual interest. The United States reiterates its commitment to supporting the Nigerian people in their fight against terrorism, economic development endeavors, and democratic transition.

The discussions between U.S. officials and CNSP representatives underscore the importance of diplomatic engagement in navigating complex security dynamics while fostering bilateral ties rooted in cooperation and mutual respect.

Source: U.S. Department Of State, April 24, 2024


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