A video of a group of soldiers, purportedly from the Niger Army, has been widely circulated on social media and messaging platforms, such as Twitter, TikTok, and WhatsApp.
According to various captions, the Niger soldiers are preparing to defend their country against the ECOWAS mission.
The military staged a coup and suspended democratic rule in Niger on July 26, 2023, causing outrage.
Nigeria shares a border with Niger and, as the leader of ECOWAS, has been at the forefront of efforts to restore democratic rule in Niger. ECOWAS issued a one-week ultimatum to the Niger Junta, threatening a military intervention if the ousted President was not reinstated. The ultimatum has since been ignored, and delegates sent to Niger for peace talks have been unsuccessful.
The Nigerian president, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has sought the support of the country’s Senate for ECOWAS intervention against the military junta in Niger.
Claim: A viral video depicts men from the Niger Army preparing for war against their country
An examination of the video revealed that the flag hoisted in the video is similar to the Senegalese flag; three vertical and equal stripes of green, gold, and red colours, with a green five-pointed star in the centre of the golden stripe.
The Niger flag, on the other hand, has a completely different pattern and colour scheme of orange, white, and green in equal horizontal bands.
Further investigation using advanced Google search revealed that the video was first posted on TikTok on April 7, 2023, and on YouTube on April 11, 2023, by a Senegalese content creation channel known as “Loieldulion, with over 130 thousand subscribers on YouTube and 719,000 followers on TikTok.
The video had the caption “Démonstration inedite des forces comandos de l’armée sénégalaise,” which translates to “unpublished demonstration of the commando forces of the Senegalese army.”
The CDD War Room confirms that the viral video shows Senegalese soldiers on parade. The claim that they are men of the Niger Army is false.