Update on coup attempt in Niger

Reuters now reports that Niger’s President Mamadou Tandja has been detained by troops and that the coup was successful:

Mutinous troops led by an army major captured Niger’s President Mamadou Tandja on Thursday after storming his palace in a four-hour gun battle that killed at least three soldiers, military sources said.

Political tensions had been high in the west African uranium exporter in recent months after Tandja changed the constitution to extend his rule last year, a move that drew widespread criticism at home and led to international sanctions.

“The coup leader has succeeded. It is being led by Major Adamou Harouna,” one Nigerien military source said. The president and the ministers were being held not far from the presidential palace in the capital Niamey, the sources added.

There was no official statement from the coup perpetrators but state radio interrupted normal programmes to broadcast military music by early evening.

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