Biden Ends Operations in Niger, Leaves $100 Million Base

( – The U.S. will be pulling out of Niger come September this year, leaving behind a $100 million military base, ostensibly for use in continued anti-terrorism efforts in the region.

The statement for the troop withdrawal was made by both the governments of the U.S. and Niger, after talks to maintain U.S. military personnel in the country fell through. The pull-out should happen “no later” than September 15, according to a news release from the U.S. Department of Defense.

The U.S. has a little less than 1,000 personnel in its base in Niger. The process of pulling out U.S. assets from the country has already begun, starting with lethal, hazardous or classified equipment. However, any items deemed too expensive to transport out of the country will likely be given to Niger’s military instead.

The agreement between the defense departments of the two countries guarantees protection for U.S. troops and personnel for the duration of the withdrawal.

While the U.S. and Niger have been working on fighting terrorist activity in the region for more than 10 years, the installation of a military junta in the country in 2023 changed the circumstances of the two countries’ relationship, and made continued U.S. military presence in the Niger “illegal.” Niger’s military junta is reportedly seeking to strengthen ties instead with strongman-run countries such as Russia, essentially necessitating the expulsion of U.S. troops from its territory. Earlier, the new Niger junta government also kicked out forces belonging to France, the country’s one-time colonial power.

The U.S. also designated the events that led to the rise in power of Niger’s military junta as a “coup”, and restricted its military support and aid to the country.

Still, despite everything, the joint U.S.-Niger statement on the withdrawal indicated that the two countries “are committed to an ongoing diplomatic dialogue to define the future of their bilateral relations.”

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