The presence of the ‘Maidan midwife,’ US Deputy Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, in post-coup Niger has enraged Washington’s NATO ally, France, Le Figaro reported over the weekend, citing a source within the French Foreign Ministry.
The US “did the exact opposite of what we thought they would do,” the French daily reported, based on the diplomat’s comments. “With allies like these, we do not need enemies,” it added. Paris has been insisting on the reinstatement of ousted President Mohamed Bazoum ever since a new military government came to power in Niger in a coup in late July.
The French government was also ready to support the use of force by West African nations for that purpose, as it upheld the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in its decision to mobilize reserve forces in the wake of the ousting.
By sending Nuland to Niger, the US demonstrated it was ready to talk to the coup leaders instead, Le Figaro said. “