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Niger rebels appoint new chief of staff of country's armed forces

Moussa Salaou Barmou replaced Abdou Sidikou Issa

PRETORIA, August 5. /TASS/. The rebels who seized power in Niger have announced the appointment of Brigadier General Moussa Salaou Barmou as the chief of staff of the country’s armed forces, the ActuNiger news portal reported.

Barmou previously served as the head of the Nigerian Special Forces. He replaced General Abdou Sidikou Issa as Chief of Staff.

The portal also reported that the head of the rebels' central body, the National Council for the Safeguard of the Homeland, General Abdourahmane Tchiani, issued a decree on the councul’s composition. Several high-ranking military officials were added to its 16 members, and a secretariat was established to coordinate with other transitional bodies. After announcing the suspension of the current constitution and all organs of government created under it, the rebels declared that the council would temporarily assume executive and legislative powers and that its chairman would serve as acting head of state.

On July 26, a group of military rebels in Niger announced the removal of President Mohamed Bazoum, closure of national borders, introduction of a curfew and suspension of the constitution, as well as a ban on political parties. The National Council for the Safeguard of the Homeland was created to run the country; General Abdourahmane Tchiani took the helm of the council on July 28.

At an emergency summit on July 30, ECOWAS leaders demanded that the rebels reinstate the president and restore constitutional order to the country. The ECOWAS states gave Niger rebels one week to meet these demands. The bloc threatened to take "all necessary measures to restore constitutional order in Niger" against the rebels and did not rule out "the use of force.".