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Burkina Faso, Niger’s Juntas Pull Out of West Africa’s Regional Military Force

Burkina Faso and Niger’s military leaders announced Saturday they decided to withdraw from the West African multi-national military force, G5 Sahel, citing its failure to meet its objectives.

The G5 Sahel, which comprises Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger, was created in 2014 and launched an anti-insurgent force in 2017 to combat an insurgency in the tri-borders region as part of a multinational force.

But a statement said Burkina and Niger “decided in full sovereignty to quit all instances of the G5 Sahel, including the joint force” as of Nov. 29.

“The organization is failing to achieve its objectives,” it said.

The G5 made minimal progress in uprooting an insurgency and Mali’s military junta announced its withdrawal from the G5 Sahel in 2022.

Burkina Faso and Niger’s statement said the G5 Sahel cannot “serve foreign interests to the detriments of our people in the name of a partnership that treats them like children, denying the sovereignty of our peoples.”

“Worse, the legitimate ambitions of our countries, of making the G5 Sahel a zone of security and development, are hindered by institutional red tape from a previous era, which convinces us that our process of independence and dignity is not compatible with G5 participation in its current form,” it said.

In September 2022, Capt. Ibrahim Traore led a coup to become Burkina Faso’s new leader after ousting Paul Henri-Damiba, who also came to power in January in a coup.

Niger plunged into turmoil July 26, 2023, when Gen. Abdourahamane Tchiani, a former commander of the presidential guard, led a military intervention that ousted President Mohamed Bazoum.

Source: AA