The Republic of Niger is a landlocked country and is largely located in the Sahara. Mali and Burkina Faso border the country to the west, Benin and Nigeria to the south, Chad to the east, Libya and Algeria to the north.
In order to estimate the enormous size of the desert areas, a physical map gives a good impression. The aerial view shows the barrenness of the mostly semi-arid country. In order to get an impression of the population density of some regions or further, almost deserted areas of Niger, interactive maps are recommended. The population density figures of about 17 pers/qkm are not meaningful for Niger. In addition, a regional map illustrates the network of connections between the various areas.
Various current theme maps can be found at ReliefWeb, including topics such as (natural) disasters, disease epidemics, the refugee situation in the west of the country (Malian border region) and in the east of the country (Diffa region) and the Nigerian border region.
The FAO maps give a good overview of the agriculturally usable area, population distribution, rainfall, temperatures, etc.
In March 2016, President Mamadou Issoufou was re-elected for a second term with 92.4% of the vote. The 59% turnout is questioned by the opposition, which had called for a boycott of the run-off. Politicians also expressed the opinion that the result did not reflect reality. Many of Issoufou’s (former) companions are disappointed with his first term in office and have little hope for the next mandate. Even if Issoufou was considered the favourite of the presidential elections, the opposition candidate Hama Amadou was never seen as without a chance.
Brigi Rafini was also reappointed prime minister in spring 2016. In October 2016, the MNSD became a member of the government and was given six ministerial posts; Seini Oumarou, a former prime minister, was given the post of head of state representative.
In Niger, a planned coup d’état was thwarted on 17 December 2015 and four high-ranking military officers arrested. On 24 November 2014, Amadou Salifou (MNSD deputy) was elected as the new president of the National Assembly.
Since summer 2013 (when Moden Fa Lumana resigned from the government), the domestic political situation of the conflict between the ruling party and the opposition has become more acute. It culminated in the flight of Hama Amadous (Prime Minister under Tandja and President of the National Assembly until summer 2014) via Burkina Faso to France. According to Hamas, his escape served to demand an international arrest warrant and a neutral investigation of the charges brought against him for his involvement in child trafficking. In July 2015, the court’s approach to the issue of child trafficking was confirmed as lawful by a commission.
Compared to these profound domestic disputes, the positive vote of confidence in Brigi Rafini’s case in November 2013 only strengthened his position.
In March 2014, students protested – partly violently – against the government and the uranium giant AREVA. This was preceded by demonstrations by students and ONGs in January 2014 against the government and AREVA.
The new agreements between AREVA, through its two subsidiaries Cominak and Somair, and the Nigerien state, which were signed in May 2014 and finally confirmed by the state in October, will lead to higher tax revenues for Niger. AREVA plans to invest 117 million euros, including the repair of the road between Tahoua and Arlit. The profitability adjustments at AREVA have meanwhile resulted in the loss of a number of subcontractors.
The various daily and weekly newspapers that exist in the diverse media landscape of Niger are only published in French. Officially it is said that the Nigerian press is largely free and subject to hardly any restrictions. Organisations such as Reporters sans frontières (RSF) also see a mostly positive development in this direction. In its press freedom index of 2018, however, Niger has fallen further compared to previous years to 63rd place out of 180 countries surveyed (Malta holds 65th place). The CPJ (Committee to Protect Journalists) is also committed to protecting reporters.
- Le Sahel
- Le Republican
- Air Info (Agadez)
- L’autre Observateur
- La Roue de l’Histoire
- Le Canard Déchaîné
- La handles
- Le démocrate
- IRIN Niger
- Planet Afrique
- ReliefWeb Niger
- Tam Tam
- Afrik.Com – Niger
- AllAfrica Niger
The state controls national television and radio and also exerts a strong influence on private radio stations.
Television reception is usually only possible in urban areas. Here, however, the distribution of television sets is quite high. In relation to the large population, however, only 17% of the population watch television regularly.
Radio stations are widely distributed throughout the country and radio news is the most important communication and information medium in Niger, as the proportion of the literate population is very small.
- Tele Sahel (State-controlled). Television station of the ORTN
- Tenere TV (private, in Niamey)
- Telestar (Pay TV, in Niamey)
Tele Sahel mostly broadcasts the programmes in French, but there are also news items in various national languages throughout the week.
- ORTN La Voix du Sahel (state, French, Arabic and local languages)
- BBC (Hausa World Service)
- Deutsche Welle
- Anfani FM
- Tambara FM
- R&M (Radie et Musique)
- Horizon FM
- Tenere FM
- Africa No 1
Since the beginning of the 2000s there have been ‘radio rurale’ (land radios) in many places. These are associative community radio stations that report in the local languages. They are relatively apolitical and deal with local and regional events (market prices, festivals). Increasingly, they are also being used as mouthpieces and a sensitising medium by development aid organisations and NGOs and are also being supported in their installation, both in terms of training and equipment.