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Togo presidency to oversee armed forces as security worsens

President of Togo Faure Gnassingbe is seen during the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government 54th Ordinary Session in Abuja, Nigeria December 22, 2018. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde

Togo’s President Faure Gnassingbé will oversee the armed forces as part of a reshuffle amid growing security concerns in the northern regions, according to a decree announced on Friday.

Until this year, Togo had been spared the frequent Islamist violence that has spread across most of West Africa over the past decade, including into Togo’s northern neighbour Burkina Faso.

But a series of attacks, including one in July in which at least 12 people were killed, has forced residents to flee and rattled the armed forces.

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Under the presidential decree, read by a spokesperson on national television, the ministry of the armed forces will become part of the presidency.

The minister of the armed forces, Maguerite Gnakadè, has stepped down. The Chief of Staff of the Togolese Armed Forces, Brigadier General Dadja Maganawé, has been replaced by Air Brigadier General Tassounti Djato.

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