Lawyers for Niger’s ousted President, Mohamed Bazoum, say they are filing a legal case in the West African country against those behind the coup that deposed the democratically elected leader.
The lawyers for Mohamed Bazoum, who was overthrown on July 26 and has since been detained, also said in a statement they were appealing to the UN Human Rights Council.
The complaint made public on Monday, October 2, 2023, is aimed at new strongman General Abdourahamane Tiani and “all others”.
It constitutes a civil action and alleges “attack and conspiracy against state authority, crimes and offences committed by civil servants and arbitrary arrests and confinements”.
It is expected to be lodged in the next few days with a court in the capital Niamey, one of the lawyers, Dominique Inchauspe.
The lawyers also said they were appealing to two bodies of the UN Human Rights Council including its working group on arbitrary detention.
Inchauspe said the coup was “an infringement on the dignity of the Nigerien state” and reaffirmed the “absolute necessity” to restore the rule of law.
Bazoum filed a lawsuit with a court of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on September 18, his Senegalese lawyer Seydou Diagne said.
He has been held in his residence since the coup.
On August 13, the coup leaders said they would pursue Bazoum for “high treason”.
Mohamed Bazoum, born 1 January 1960, is a Nigerien politician who served as the 10th President of Niger from 2021 to 2023. He assumed office in April 2021 after winning the 2020–21 presidential election and surviving a failed coup d’état attempt.
He was ousted in the 2023 Nigerien coup d’état by members of the Presidential Guard and the armed forces led by Abdourahamane Tchiani.