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Thousands of young people respond to the Niger junta’s call for volunteers before of the ECOWAS invasion.



Supporters of Niger’s junta were compelled to halt a census of persons prepared to serve for non-military jobs in defense of a hypothetical intervention by West African countries on Saturday, claiming that the turnout was overwhelming.

Thousands of people, mostly young men, had gathered outside a stadium in the capital Niamey hours before the event’s scheduled start time, demonstrating the junta’s strong support in some quarters following the July 26 ouster of President Mohamed Bazoum.

“We never thought we could mobilize (this number of people) in all our calculations and understandings,”

Younoussa Hima, co-organizer of the campaign named “The Mobilisation of Young People for the Fatherland,” stated.”As a result, doing this work today is extremely difficult for us.”

That is what prompted us to postpone the census,” Hima remarked outside the stadium after the masses had dispersed.

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), West Africa’s largest regional organization, claimed on Friday that it has decided on an unspecified “D-Day” for a possible military invasion if diplomatic attempts fail – an escalation that could further destabilize a conflict-torn and poor area.

The organizers of the Niamey recruitment drive stated that their goal was not to sign up volunteers for the army, but rather to compile a list of those prepared to donate their civilian talents in the event of an ECOWAS invasion.However, many others in the crowd appeared to be eager to fight.

Possible assault”They urged young people to respond to a possible attack on our soil.”

And we are prepared for any attack,”

blogger Tahirou Seydou Abdoul Nassirou stated.”My life, I give my life to my country,” he added, wiping away a tear as other young men nodded and shouted.

On Saturday, an ECOWAS delegation traveled into Niamey to hold discussions with the junta, indicating that efforts to end the crisis peacefully are still ongoing.

The amount of support for the junta in Niger has been difficult to gauge, but thousands attended a previous gathering at the stadium on Aug. 11 and supported coup leaders’ promise to defy the bloc.

Kader Haliou, 35, said at the stadium on Saturday that patriotism was not the only reason people wanted to help the junta.”

The majority of the young people who have arrived are unemployed.”

“Because of our idleness and lack of work, getting registered is a blessing for us,” he remarked.

The coup and following international sanctions have added to Niger’s already precarious economic situation.

According to the World Bank, it is one of the world’s least developed countries, with more than 40% of the people living in extreme poverty. REUTERS

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