Hundreds of protesters waved Russian flags and chanted slogans against France in the capital of Niger. The protests were organized by supporters of the military junta that overthrew the country’s elected president in a coup last month.
The protesters also called for the withdrawal of French troops from Niger and for an end to the French military intervention in the country. The protests were largely peaceful, but there were some reports of clashes between protesters and security forces.
The waving of Russian flags in the protests is a sign of growing anti-Western sentiment in Niger. Niger is a former French colony, and many Nigeriens resent the continued French military presence in the country. Russia has been courting Niger in recent years, and the waving of Russian flags in the protests is seen as a sign of Niger’s growing ties to Russia.
The protests in Niger come at a time when France is facing increasing pressure to withdraw its troops from the country. The French military intervention in Niger has been criticized for its high cost in terms of both human life and financial resources.
It is unclear what the long-term implications of the protests will be for French-Nigerien relations. However, the protests are a sign that there is growing anti-French sentiment in Niger, and this could make it more difficult for France to maintain its military presence in the country.
The protests could also embolden Russia to increase its presence in Niger. Russia has been courting Niger in recent years, and the waving of Russian flags in the protests is seen as a sign of Niger’s growing ties to Russia. If Russia is able to increase its influence in Niger, it could pose a challenge to French interests in the region.
What can France do to improve relations with Niger?
France will need to do more to address the concerns of the Nigerien people if it wants to improve relations with the country. This could include withdrawing French troops from Niger, or at least reducing their numbers. France could also provide more economic assistance to Niger, and it could work to improve relations between Niger and its neighbors.
The protests in Niger are a reminder of the complex challenges facing France in Africa. France needs to find ways to fight terrorism without alienating local populations. If France is able to do this, it will be able to maintain its influence in the region for many years to come.