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- Author or Editor: Kristine Anderson x
Niger, like its neighbours in the Sahel, has since the early 2010s faced increased violence and insecurity that has captured significant geopolitical attention. Niger’s armed forces are mobilized throughout the country to quell insurgencies, while a number of international forces are present under the auspices of capacity-building missions providing equipment, training, intelligence and other behind-the-scenes activities aimed at empowering the national military and state apparatus to provide protection to citizens. Simultaneously, Niger is populated by international and national non-governmental organizations and United Nations agencies, which play a role in generating discourse and practice around gender-based violence and women’s rights. As military and humanitarian actors with different methods and discourse find themselves sharing the same operating spaces, the resulting dynamic is one of simultaneous NGO-ization, in which (largely international) actors overtake the civil and discursive space for women’s rights; and militarization, which privileges violence and thus restricts the safety and agency of women and girls. This chapter argues that concurrence of these phenomena obstructs women’s participation and is productive of gender-based violence, ultimately contributing to the spiralling fragility of the country.