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Niger coup soldiers ‘want democracy back’

Soldiers who have seized power in Niger say they want the country to be “an example of democracy and good governance” amid international criticism of their actions. Reports said the nation’s ousted president, Mamadou Tandja, was “doing well” following Thursday’s coup, but his whereabouts were still unknown.

Armed military men stormed the presidential palace in Niamey, kidnapping 71-year-old Mr Tandja.
The junta — calling itself the Supreme Council for the Restoration of Democracy — has appeared on state-run TV and announced their leader was squadron Chief Salou Djibo.

It comes as the African Union called for a “quick return to constitutional order”, while former colonial ruler France said it “condemns any seizure of power by non-constitutional methods”.

It is believed the coup soldiers were deeply unhappy with a change to the constitution, which allowed Mr Tandja to remain in power.


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