It is a defeat for France when it announced that it will withdraw its ambassador and troops from Niger in response to the country’s military rulers’ decision to ban French aircraft from its airspace and Niger’s growing ties to Russia and China. The move is a further sign of the deteriorating relationship between France and its former colony.
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The decision to withdraw French troops from Niger is a significant one, as France has been a major military presence in the country for several years. France has been providing military support to Niger in its fight against Islamist militants, and the withdrawal of French troops could leave a significant security vacuum in the region.