The Netherlands suspends direct cooperation with Nigerien government

Following the coup in Niger, the Dutch government has suspended direct cooperation with the country’s central government until further notice. This will affect funding for development cooperation and security programmes that are run through Niger’s central government.

Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation Liesje Schreinemacher and Minister of Foreign Affairs Wopke Hoekstra reached this decision on Friday, on the grounds that they do not wish to work with coup leaders. Programmes that will see funding suspended include a healthcare project (€6 million) and a programme to improve the prison system (almost €4 million). The Netherlands’ contribution towards the training of mobile border guards (€5 million), as part of the EUCAP Sahel Niger civilian mission, will also be temporarily suspended.

The government is exploring which programmes funded through the United Nations, other international organisations or local partners can be continued in order to provide support to the people of Niger.

Ms Schreinemacher visited Niger earlier this year together with Minister for Migration Eric van der Burg. During this working visit the ministers made agreements with Niger’s government about closer cooperation on tackling irregular migration in Niger, promoting the protection of migrants, improving border controls and combating people smuggling. The further elaboration of this migration partnership will be put on hold pending developments in Niger.