ROME: An Italian military plane carrying 87 evacuees from Niger, where a coup d’etat took place last week, arrived in Rome early on Wednesday, Reuters journalists at the airport said.

Some 36 Italians, as well as 21 US citizens, four Bulgarians, two Austrians and one citizen each from Britain, Niger, Hungary, Senegal, and Nigeria were on the plane, as well as military personnel.

Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani told RAI public broadcaster that some Italian civilians decided to stay in Niger, and added that the Italian embassy in Niamey would remain open.

The Italian ambassador, Emilia Gatto, told RAI that there were “more or less 80” Italians in Niamey before the partial evacuation, and ruled out danger for those who opted to remain.

Italy has about 300 troops in Niger as part of counter-insurgency and military training missions, but there has been no announcement of them being evacuated.


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