United States rejects five-year transition in Mali

The United States rejects a transition in Mali that would last five years before the return of civil power and supports the taking of additional sanctions by ECOWAS, said on Tuesday the American ambassador to the UN, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, during a meeting of the Security Council.

“We urge the transitional government to keep its commitment to the Malian people to bring their country back to democracy,” she said. “A five-year transition is not in their interest and prolongs the pain of the people,” added the American diplomat, calling for “free and fair” and “transparent” elections.

“We welcome the strong actions taken by ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States) on January 9 in favor of democracy and stability”, also said Linda Thomas-Greenfield, referring to the news unprecedented sanctions (border closures, economic measures, etc.) taken by this regional body.

On the night of Monday to Tuesday, the US State Department issued a statement with the same terms, stressing that the United States shared “the great disappointment” of ECOWAS facing “the lack of action or progress to organize elections ”in Mali.

“We support the decision of the ECOWAS to impose additional economic and financial sanctions to urge the transitional government to keep its commitment to the Malian people to bring their country back to democracy,” the spokesperson of the State Department, Ned Price.

The ruling junta in Bamako called on Malians to demonstrate on Friday against the sanctions imposed by the organization of West African states, while saying they were open to dialogue.

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