Thousands of people marched in Niger’s capital on Sunday in support of last month’s military coup, whose leader has warned against outside meddling and suggested a three-year handover of power.
Protesters yelled anti-French and anti-West African regional grouping ECOWAS chants, with the latter mulling a military intervention to restore elected President Mohamed Bazoum if continuing talks with coup leaders fail.
The new military leaders of the Sahel state have officially prohibited demonstrations, but those in favour of the coup are permitted to go ahead.
The demonstrators waved placards saying “Stop the military intervention” and “No to sanctions”, in reference to the financial and trade restrictions imposed by the Economic Community of West African States four days after the coup on July 26.
According to AFP journalists, artists who supported the new military rule performed at the pro-coup event on Sunday.
A day after the new military ruler in Niamey issued a warning that an attack on Niger would not be a “walk in the park,” the latest in a series of pro-coup rallies took place.
In a televised speech on Saturday, General Abdourahamane Tiani added that he did not want to “confiscate” power and that a return to civilian control would not last longer than three years.