Before the United Nations Security Council, meeting to examine the last quarterly report of the Secretary General on the situation in Mali, the head of Malian diplomacy Abdoulaye Diop denied many allegations contained in the document. He reiterated our country’s position on these issues.
During the various interventions, there was talk, among other things, of the progress made by our country in the transition process, the implementation of the Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation, human rights violations, restrictions imposed by Malian authorities to Minusma, the issue of rotations, that of Ivorian soldiers, the deterioration of the security situation.
The Russian Federation maintains very good relations with our country. Its representative at the UN, Anna M. Evstigneeva, has indicated that the situation in Mali is stabilizing. According to her, despite the difficulties, the Malian Armed Forces have demonstrated in recent months that they are capable of achieving real results in the fight against terrorism.
She underlined that Russia has provided the Malian Army with multifaceted assistance, particularly in terms of capacity building and training of soldiers. She will then add that her country is deeply concerned by attempts to transform the Sahel into a theater of geopolitical confrontation between foreign powers.
Believing that this situation is contrary to the interests of the States and peoples of the Sahel, Anna M. Evstigneeva cited in support of her remarks the internal disagreements of the G5 Sahel, provoked from outside and which forced Mali to leave this organization. She denounced the strongly negative reactions of the West against the strengthening of cooperation between Russia and Mali.
IMPORTANT PROGRESS- In his speech, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Abdoulaye Diop, first indicated that at the political level, important progress has been made during the period covered by this report. This progress relates to a peaceful and secure return to constitutional order, in particular the adoption of a timetable for political and electoral reforms, the timetable for elections, the new electoral law, the submission of the preliminary draft of the new Constitution to the President of the Transition, etc.
On the implementation of the Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation, Abdoulaye Diop will say that Mali remains fully committed to its diligent and intelligent implementation for its lasting stability. He recalled the holding of the high-level decision-making meeting last August, followed by the 6th high-level meeting of the Monitoring Committee, on September 2, 2022, which made it possible to remove certain obstacles. But also, the 46th session of the CSA, held on October 11, 2022, which enabled the Malian parties to renew their commitments for a lasting peace. And at the same time, the government organized the first edition of the National Reconciliation Week.
With regard to the security situation, the head of Malian diplomacy considered that the report under consideration would have gained in objectivity if it provided more information on the efforts and progress made by the government in securing the national territory and protection of civilian populations.
According to Abdoulaye Diop, since December 2021, the Defense and Security Forces of Mali have launched major military operations which have made it possible to destroy several terrorist sanctuaries, to make significant seizures of weapons and war materials, to liberate several localities and encourage the return of displaced persons. In addition, he will say that the government has adopted an integrated strategy for the Center which includes purely security aspects, political approaches and economic, social and cultural development.
SELF-DEFENSE- In addition, the head of Malian diplomacy said he was surprised that the report had passed over in silence Mali’s referral to the Security Council on August 15, 2022, with regard to attempts at destabilization and repeated violations airspace by French forces.
This is why he renewed the government’s request for a specific meeting of the Security Council, which will give him the opportunity to present concrete evidence of acts of duplicity, espionage and destabilization by France to the against Mali, including the sharing of intelligence and the dropping of military equipment for the benefit of criminal organizations. Abdoulaye Diop warned that the government reserves the right to resort to self-defense if France continues to undermine Mali’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and national security.
On the issue of human rights, Minister Diop maintained that the military operations of the Defense and Security Forces are conducted in strict compliance with human rights and international humanitarian law. For him, the government remains firmly opposed to the instrumentalization and politicization of the issue of human rights for the purposes of destabilization, intimidation and blackmail. He explained that contrary to what is conveyed, there is no desire to restrict the movements of the UN Mission.
Regarding the file of the Ivorian soldiers, Abdoulaye Diop deplored that the report omits to refer to the note verbale dated July 22, 2022 by which the Minusma clearly establishes that there is no link between the 49 soldiers and the Assignment.
Finally, he recalled the key principles enacted by the President of the Transition and which guide public action in Mali, namely respect for the sovereignty of Mali, respect for the strategic choices and partners made by Mali and the taking taking into account the vital interests of the Malian people in the decisions taken.
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