The French government has reacted to the Niger junta’s letter ordering its ambassador, Sylvain Itte, to depart from the territory within 48 hours.

On Friday night, the junta accused the French diplomat of refusing to honour its invitation from the Nigerien Ministry of Foreign Affairs following what it termed as the rebellious behaviour and comments of certain ministers of the ousted President Mohamed Bazoum.

The junta maintained that both the narratives of the dethroned ministers against them and the position of France run contrary to the interests of Niger Republic.

The letter added that “the competent Nigerien authorities have decided to withdraw their approval from Mr. Sylvain ITTE”, asking him to “leave the territory Nigerian within forty-eight hours (48h)”.

But in its reaction, the French government rejected the ultimatum saying “it did not recognise the military ruler’s Authority,” according to AFP.

“The putschists do not have the authority to make this request, the ambassador’s approval coming solely from the legitimate elected Nigerien authorities.

“We are constantly evaluating the security and operating conditions of our embassy,” the government stated.

It is not immediately clear what will transpire sooner or later between both parties.