Nigeria’s army has said it has not received an order “to commence military action against the military junta in Niger”.

In a statement reacting to a report that Nigerian soldiers were mobilising in preparation, a spokesperson said that the armed forces could not begin a mission on behalf of the regional group, Ecowas, without the mandate from the heads of state.

Brig Gen Tukur Gusau said that the “military option was the last option to be taken in case every other option fails to reverse the situation” in Niger.

Military chiefs are currently meeting in the Nigerian capital, Abuja, to “submit their plans” to the region’s leaders.

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