Niger's military junta is making it difficult to enter and exit the country. It has prevented officials from the United Nations (UN), the African Union and the West African regional bloc (ECOWAS) from visiting the country. On Tuesday, efforts to reinstate the country's ousted president had no effect.
The African Union, the UN and ECOWAS were blocked from traveling to the capital Niamey on Wednesday by a letter. The letter reads as follows: "The current context of anger and revolt among the population following the sanctions imposed by ECOWAS makes it impossible to welcome this delegation in the required serenity and security."
Demanding that President Mohamed Bazoum, who was ousted in a military coup on July 26, be reinstated within a week, ECOWAS said a military intervention could be possible otherwise.
But when the deadline expired on Sunday, the junta closed the country's airspace.
Unable to land in Niamey, the bloc's leaders are scheduled to meet in Nigeria on Thursday to assess the crisis and discuss a solution.
ECOWAS Chairperson and Nigerian President Bola Ahmed Tinubu ordered new sanctions on the junta on Tuesday after the crackdown on the leaders.
Tinubu imposed the sanctions through Nigeria's central bank, targeting entities and individuals involved in the coup, presidential spokesperson Ajuri Ngelale told reporters in Abuja.
Source: Anadolu Agency