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Coups in the Sahel: Where China, U.S., and EU Should Work Together

Officers of the Niger National Police and Nigerien soldiers stand guard as supporters of the Niger's National Council for the Safeguard of the Homeland (CNSP) gather at a demonstration ouside the Niger and French airbases in Niamey on August 27, 2023.

Niger’s coup leaders have been unfazed by military threats and economic blockade of food and medicine by neighboring countries and have not returned to their barracks. The unfolding coup is the latest event in ongoing chaos across the Sahel. Sudan fights a civil war, jihadism menaces the whole region, and violence is trickling south. Even before the coup, spillover chaos from Burkina Faso had put the coastal states of Ivory Coast, Ghana, Togo, and Benin on edge.

Yet amidst the cascade of crises, there is a unique opportunity for major global players to work together and address the root causes of so much regional instability.

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