United States Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken on Wednesday met virtually with Nigerien President Mohamed Bazoum, and both leaders discussed a wide range of issues, including democracy and the security situation in the Sahel region.
“Secretary Blinken and President Bazoum emphasized the importance of U.S.-Niger cooperation in advancing democracy in the Sahel and the wider West Africa region, including through Niger’s participation in the December 9-10 Summit for Democracy,” State Department spokesperson Ned Price said in a statement. “The Secretary and President Bazoum also discussed the need to cooperate with African institutions to encourage respect for political pluralism and timely democratic transitions in neighboring countries as well as the importance of fighting corruption.”
Price added that Secretary Blinken commended Niger’s contributions to regional security including through its participation in the UN peacekeeping mission in Mali, the Multinational Joint Task Force, and the D-ISIS Coalition.
“The Secretary also commended Niger’s efforts to use its presidency of the UN Security Council to highlight the important nexus between security and climate change,” he said.