US speeds up troop withdrawal from Niger

US speeds up troop withdrawal from Niger

The US is withdrawing its troops from Niger ahead of schedule with only 300 soldiers left in the uranium and oil rich Sahel country.

Niger authorities have given mid-September as a deadline for the troop withdrawal, which comes against the backdrop of an increasing anti-western sentiment in the military-ruled Sahel states.

Niger is also shifting its alliances moving closer to Russia and has reportedly sold uranium to Iran despite sanctions.

“We are on track to be done before the 15th of September,” a senior US defense official told reporters.

American troops have been deployed in Niger for more than a decade to help the country fight terrorist groups.

The US had two military bases in the country: an air base in Niamey and an air base in Agadez.

The Agadez base, worth 110 million dollars, was the most important where most US soldiers were stationed operating drones to monitor terrorist activity.

According to the Global Terrorism Index (GTI), the Sahel region in sub-Saharan Africa now accounts for 43% of global terrorism deaths—more than South Asia and the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region combined.


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