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AP- Bilateral cooperation, security and the forthcoming presidential elections in Niger formed the bulk of the talks between the French minister and the Nigerien authorities.

At the end of his 24-hour stay in Niger, Jean-Yves Le Drian paid a vibrant tribute to Mahamadou Issoufou who, arriving at the end of his mandate, respected his commitment not to stand for a third term. The future presidential election will be a benchmark for Africa, the French foreign minister said in a press briefing with his counterpart Kalla Hankouraou. “I came to meet President Issoufou before the end of his mandate, here, because since 2012 we have had many quality exchanges and I wanted to pay tribute to him. ”

Jean-Yves Le Drian, who spoke at length with President Issoufou, gives his assessment of the future elections in 2020: “They will take place, when they must take place, in accordance with the Constitution. The quality of the election in Niger will be a benchmark for all of Africa “, notwithstanding” the vigilance of the Constitutional Court “.

The head of French diplomacy also met with humanitarian actors after the Kouré tragedy and the elements of the Barkhane force in Niamey.

The military cooperation between the Nigerien forces and Barkhane has reached an unprecedented level, for his part said Minister Kalla Hankouraou, with a special mention for the operation “Bourrasque”: “The troops of Barkhane, the national armed forces, the Tacouba forces, carried out a fight box by box, bush by bush, to flush out [the terrorists, Ed]everywhere. “

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