Home LATEST NEWS The military want to keep power in Mali, accuses ECOWAS

The military want to keep power in Mali, accuses ECOWAS

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Coming to power in a putsch in August 2020, the military revoked their initial commitment to organize elections in February 2022 that would have brought civilians back to the head of the country.

They let it be known that they considered necessary several additional years at the helm of this country which has been plunged for years into a serious security and political crisis.

In reaction, the Economic Community of West African States imposed on January 9 a series of severe diplomatic and economic sanctions against Mali.

This posture of the Military Transition Authorities clearly suggests a desire to remain in power for a period of more than five years., said on Friday the Economic Community of West African States in a letter.

West African leaders said they expect Malian military authorities a reasonable and realistic schedule for the holding of elections.

The sanctions will be lifted gradually on the basis of this timetable and its diligent and satisfactory implementation., says the letter.

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The letter was released on the same day that West African leaders are due to hold a virtual summit on the situation in Burkina Faso, where army officers toppled President Roch Marc Christian Kaboré on Monday.

The Economic Community of West African States ordered the closure of Mali’s borders with its Member States, an embargo on trade (excluding basic necessities) and financial transactions, the suspension of its financial aid and the freezing of Mali’s assets at the Central Bank of the States of West Africa (BCEAO).

A battery of sanctions that risk weighing on the already fragile economy of Mali, a landlocked country and among the poorest in the world, where a jihadist insurgency has been raging since 2012. Large parts of the country’s vast territory are beyond the control of the authorities.

On Thursday, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian denounced behavior irresponsible of the Malian junta, which called for the withdrawal of Danish forces from Mali, and warned that it would be necessary to draw consequences.

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French and European forces cannot not stay like that in Mali and are examining how adapt their device fight against jihadists in the region, he said on Friday.

We have initiated discussions both with our African partners and with our European partners to find out how we can adapt our system to the new situation. in Mali, he said on RTL radio.

Last year, France announced a reduction of its forces in Mali, while setting up a group of European special forces dubbed Takuba. But relations have deteriorated with the military junta.

The international community is also concerned about the presence on Malian soil of paramilitaries from the sulphurous group of Russian mercenaries Wagner.

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