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  13 Aug 2022, 23:32

UN peacekeeping rotations to resume in Mali from Monday

   
          BAMAKO, Aug  13, 2022 (BSS/AFP) - The UN peacekeeping mission in Mali, 
MINUSMA, is to resume contingent rotations from Monday under fresh approval 
measures, the Malian foreign minister and a UN spokeswoman have said.
       "MINUSMA agreed to the new procedures and communicated them to all 
countries contributing troops. There will be no exception," Foreign Minister 
Abdoulaye Diop said Saturday, after the Sahel state suspended the rotations 
last month over "national security" reasons.
       The peacekeeping force's spokeswoman Myriam Dessables confirmed the news 
and said: "Rotations are to resume from Monday."
       The announcement came after Germany said Friday it had stopped 
reconnaissance operations and helicopter transport flights in Mali until 
further notice after Bamako denied flyover rights to MINUSMA.
       Those rights were refused despite assurances to the contrary from the 
Malian Defence Minister Sadio Camara in a call with his German counterpart 
Christine Lambrecht Thursday, the German defence ministry spokesman said.
       Diop said the various contingents previously had to seek approval directly 
from the Malian authorities.
       But now "all requests must go via MINUSMA, who will then pass them on to 
the foreign ministry", the minister said.
       The July 14 suspension of rotations came four days after Mali arrested 49 
Ivorian soldiers it later described as "mercenaries" intent on toppling the 
country's military-led government.
       Ivory Coast said the troops had been sent to provide backup to MINUSMA.
       The peacekeeping mission acknowledged there had been "dysfunctions" in 
deploying the Ivorian troops.
       Mali has been ruled by a military junta since 2020.
       The junta has turned away from France and toward Russia in its fight 
against a 10-year jihadist insurgency that has claimed thousands of lives and 
forced hundreds of thousands from their homes.


 

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