British counter-terrorism officers training Nigeria’s army to fight Boko Haram will be providing logistical and planning support for the West African troops.
The Nigerian army has requested for assistance from the British military to plan a rapid reaction incursion into Gambia, where ECOWAS forces will be deployed to install businessman Adama Barrow as president.
Barrow won the West African nation’s last month’s election defeating longtime authoritarian ruler President Yahya Jammeh, who is now refusing to step down.
West African leaders led an unsuccessful mediation effort for President Jammeh to step aside. Jammeh insists the status quo remains the same until the courts make a ruling on his election petition.
Gambia’s former colonial master, Great Britain played little to no role for far in ending the political crisis. The involvement of Senegal brought France to play a major role.
French President Francois Hollande met with President-elect Barrow and had since last month’s election said Jammeh’s exit is “non-negotiable” and the will of the Gambian people must be respected.
It is hoped that a military operation could be fairly swift. Mr. Jammeh’s army has just 900 soldiers, some of whom were seen partying in the streets after he lost the election.