A Max Air aircraft, carrying 360 Nigerian pilgrims on a Hajj flight to Niamey, Niger Republic, has been left stranded at the city’s airport due to the unfolding military coup in the country.
The b-747-400 aircraft, with Captain Maitama Kabo in command and 18 crew members on board, landed in Niamey at 2140z (2240 local time) but is unable to depart as the situation remains uncertain.
The coup attempt in Niger has drawn international concern, with the United States Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, calling for the immediate release of Niger Republic President, Mohamed Bazoum. Blinken emphasized that the attempt to seize power through force and disrupt the constitution is deeply concerning, urging for Bazoum’s release.
The group of soldiers involved in the coup stated that they have removed President Mohamed Bazoum from power. In a televised address, the Niger Republic Army spokesman, Colonel Major Amadou Adramane, announced the end of President Bazoum’s regime and imposed a curfew, closing the nation’s borders “until further notice.”
Nigerian President and Chairman of ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government, Bola Tinubu, reacted strongly to the planned coup d’état in the Niger Republic.
He declared that ECOWAS and all advocates of democracy would not tolerate any action that undermines a democratically-elected government.
The situation has raised significant regional concerns and underscores the importance of preserving democratic governance in the region.
As the military coup unfolds, the stranded Max Air aircraft and its passengers remain in limbo, awaiting further updates on the evolving situation in Niamey.
The international community closely monitors developments, hoping for a peaceful resolution and the restoration of stability in the Niger Republic.
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