On July 26, following the military coup in Niger, citizens in the region could not return to Türkiye due to the closure of the airspace. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs brought the citizens of the region to Istanbul with a special flight. In addition to Turkish citizens, Azerbaijani citizens also took their places on the special flight.
According to Ihlas News Agency, the Airbus A330-200 type plane with flight number TK365, which took off from the International Diori Hamani Airport in the capital Niamey at 21:30 local time, landed in Istanbul at 04:30 in the morning. The passengers, most of whom were Turkish citizens, went through passport control and entered the country after the plane landed.
A citizen who has been working in Niger for more than a year and returned home with a special flight told about the process of returning to Türkiye.
"Normally we were supposed to return to Türkiye 2 days ago, but since the coup plotters there closed the airport, they rescheduled the flight for 2 days later. In the meantime, our consulate, the authorities there and here were all very helpful and provided us with this opportunity,” he said.
A Turkish citizen from Niger said that there were systemic problems due to the power outage in the country and their tickets to return to Türkiye were postponed.
"We thank our government and authorities. Probably this flight was made with special permission. Because we were constantly postponing our tickets. When the last plane came with special permission, Niger gets electricity from Nigeria. When Nigeria cuts off the electricity, their internal electricity needs are very limited. There is electricity 2-3 hours a day, the rest of the time there is none. Internet depends on it, water depends on it. There were many systemic problems," the citizen said.
Another passenger who returned home with a special flight stated that he was very happy to return to Türkiye.
"We had some troubles there. We were working on road construction there and things got a bit complicated. The soldiers seized power. We don't know what we will face because there was a vacuum of authority in the country. But there was no bad situation against Turks,” he emphasized.
“We had friends who wanted to leave and our company helped them. Our friends who wanted to come came but we have many friends who continue to work there. Our consulate is really working very well and I thank them. They made a great effort during the evacuation today. We are very happy to be in our country,” he added.
In Niger, President Mohamed Bazoum was detained by elements of the Presidential Guard Regiment on July 26, and the military announced its seizure of power that evening.
On July 28, General Abdourrahmane (Omar) Tchiani, the commander of the Presidential Guard Regiment, assumed leadership of the junta, the National Council for the Safeguard of the Homeland (CNSP), and became the head of the transitional government.
Source: Ihlas News Agency