France's ambassador in Niger was airlifted out of the country early Wednesday morning, around one month after the military junta in authority ordered his departure, two security sources revealed.
“The ambassador and six colleagues left Niamey around 4:00 a.m. (0300 GMT),” the diplomatic source from the French embassy said.
The departure was confirmed by a source in the Niger interior ministry, who said the plane was bound for Chad.
On Sunday, French President Emmanuel Macron stated that Paris would withdraw its ambassador, Sylvain Itte, from Niger, followed by the French military contingent in the next months, in response to the post-coup administration in Niamey's demands.
Niger's leaders, who deposed democratically elected President Mohamed Bazoum on July 26, applauded France's announcement but said they were waiting for official action.
Itte's departure had been demanded by the administration since the end of August.
They revoked his diplomatic immunity and visa, but Paris had refused to withdraw him until today.
France has refused to recognise the military chiefs' authority and continues to seek Bazoum's release and return as the democratically elected President of the country.