Kathleen Fitzgibbons, the recently appointed U.S. Ambassador to Niger, has arrived in the capital city, Niamey. However, her formal presentation of credentials will be postponed due to the ongoing “current political crisis,” as announced by the U.S. State Department on Saturday.
Fitzgibbons’ presence in Niger is not indicative of a change in the United States’ policy stance but rather a response to the requirement for experienced leadership within the mission during this challenging period. Matthew Miller, spokesperson for the State Department, clarified this in a statement.
The U.S. has been actively advocating for a diplomatic resolution to the crisis that emerged on July 26 when military officers in Niger seized power, resulting in the ousting of President Mohamed Bazoum and his subsequent confinement to his residence.
Kathleen Fitzgibbons’ primary diplomatic objective will center on promoting a diplomatic resolution that safeguards Niger’s constitutional order. Additionally, her efforts will be directed towards securing the prompt release of President Bazoum, his family, and all those who have been unlawfully detained. These points were highlighted by Miller.
In response to diplomatic efforts potentially faltering, the main regional organization in West Africa recently announced that it has established an undisclosed “D-Day” as a potential timeline for military intervention to reinstate democracy in Niger.
Kathleen Fitzgibbons, a career diplomat, obtained confirmation for her role from the U.S. Senate in July, almost a year after her initial nomination.
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