Russia Deploys Military Instructors, Air-Defense System to Niger – State TV

Russian military instructors and defense ministry personnel arrived in Niger, as reported by Niger state television RTN, highlighting the growing ties between Niger and Moscow, similar to other military-led regimes in the region. This development follows a recent agreement aimed at enhancing military cooperation between Niger and Russia, which includes the installation of a Russian anti-aircraft system to bolster Niger’s defense capabilities.

Footage from RTN showed the arrival and unloading of a Russian military cargo plane, watched by personnel in military fatigues. An instructor, appearing in camouflage and partially obscured by a neck gaiter, was quoted stating their mission to train the Nigerian army and strengthen military ties between the two nations.

This move comes shortly after Niger severed its military agreement with the United States, which had allowed the operation of American personnel from two bases, signaling a shift in Niger’s international military alliances. The Pentagon expressed concerns over Niger’s deepening relationship with Russia before the termination of the U.S. agreement.

The trend of closer ties with Russia is not isolated to Niger. Still, it is also observed in neighboring Mali and Burkina Faso, where military coups have reshaped regional dynamics and formed the Alliance of Sahel States (AES). These changes coincide with increased violence and a severe humanitarian crisis in the region, where conflict fatalities and displacement continue to rise, adding to the challenges faced by one of the world’s poorest areas.

 

About Geraldine Boechat 2716 Articles
Senior Editor for Medafrica Times and former journalist for Swiss National Television. former NGO team leader in Burundi and Somalia