Niger arrests ten after foiled coup

By REUTERS
August 3, 2011 15:57

 
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NIAMEY - Niger security forces arrested ten soldiers for trying to overthrow the government last month, President Mahamadou Issoufou said late on Tuesday, in his first public mention of the alleged attempted coup.

The West African state, a top uranium supplier to France's nuclear industry and also one of the world's poorest countries, has suffered three military overthrows in a decade, including one last year that toppled former president Mamadou Tandja.

"Ten of those who had sought to undermine the security of the state on the night of July 12 to 13 are under arrest and another remains on the loose," Issoufou said in a televised address, meant to mark the nation's 51st anniversary since declaring independence from France.

Military sources told Reuters that the men arrested included members of the junta that had toppled Tandja in February 2010 and had paved the way to the elections which brought Issoufou to power this year.

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