In a statement, the envoy simply said that he had in-depth discussions with a government delegation led by the External Affairs Minister. He also reiterated the commitment of ECOWAS to facilitate an agreement for the restoration of constitutional order. In late February, the regional organization called for elections to be held within 12 to 16 months.
For their part, Malian officials regret the lack of agreement. In a press release, a government spokesman outlined the president’s “final” efforts to transition. Asimi Gosta agreed to review the timetable from 36 months to 29 months, then made a final concession at 24 months. This new deadline “uncompressed in the eyes of the Mali authorities” did not receive the consent of the ECOWAS arbitrator. A decision that the Mali government “regrets”. “Clearly, the ECOWAS still has not adequately taken into account the complexity of the issues facing Mali,” says a government spokesman.
Sanctions target ruling junta
The sub-regional organization therefore remains on its position and specifies that an agreement “will make it possible to lift the measures taken by ECOWAS against Mali”. But according to a source close to the discussion, she would not be against a slightly longer transition to the leadership of a government of national unity.
ECOWAS overwhelmingly approved the junta of Colonel Asimi Gosta in January, which was brought to the head of Mali by a first coup in August 2020 and a second put in May 2021 to put the president “of the transition” to the throne .
These sanctions – the closure of borders with ECOWAS countries, particularly restrictions on trade and financial transactions – punish the military’s plan to continue the regime for several years, and its unfulfilled commitment to hold elections in February 2022 that will allow civilians bring him back to rule. Country.
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