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Crisis in Mali: AU welcomes and backs President Tebboune’s initiative

The Peace and Security Council (PSC) of the African Union (AU) welcomed the readiness and efforts of Algeria, led by President Abdelmadjid Tebboune, to accompany Mali and ECOWAS in the salutary path of mutual understanding in order to safeguard the higher interests of the Malian people and avoid a spiral of tension and an exacerbation of the crisis in the region.

The AU PSC welcomed “Welcomes the proposal made by the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria to accompany the Republic of Mali and the ECOWAS on the salutary path of mutual understanding, and appeals to the Transitional Authorities in Mali and ECOWAS to engage together in this initiative in order to address the outstanding areas of difference with a view for facilitating the return of Mali to constitutional order within an appropriate and feasible period of time, not exceeding sixteen (16) month,” said the council in a communiqué released ahead of the meeting on Mali held on 14 January.

The PSC said that “the implementation of the pertinent provisions of the aforementioned ECOWAS communiqués will be considered by the PSC in conjunction with the outcome of the efforts to be deployed by Algeria.”

It also reaffirmed that Algeria was able to guide the process for the establishment of a constitutional order in Mali unifying and consensual with the aim of enshrining the achievements and recommendations of the Peace and Reconciliation Agreement in Mali from the Algiers process.

A press release from the Presidency of the Republic published on January 11 had indicated that “President Abdelmadjid Tebboune, who emphasized the need for an inclusive approach to address the complexity of structural and economic problems and challenges facing Mali, including the fight against terrorism, considered reasonable and justifiable a transition period of twelve (12) to sixteen (16) months.”

During an audience he had granted on January 6 to a high-level Malian delegation, President Tebboune had also stressed “the need for the transitional authorities of Mali to commit to making the year 2022 that of the establishment of a Malian constitutional unifying and consensual order aiming to enshrine the achievements and recommendations of the Peace and Reconciliation Agreement in Mali resulting from the Algiers process,” had said the source.

Besides, the PSC called “for restraint and the need for all Malian stakeholders to engage in dialogue and to continue to work together within the framework of the 2015 Peace and Reconciliation Agreement for Mali, which emanated from the Algiers process, as the only means to ensure an inclusive approach to address challenges facing Mali which are fundamentally structural and security-related.”

The PSC requested the AU Commission to immediately conduct consultations among the direct neighboring countries of Mali and to subsequently present a report on the outcome of the consultations, and to swiftly and directly engage with the Malian Transition Authorities and all stakeholders, inclusive of ECOWAS, with a view to finalizing a more practical election timetable that will be acceptable to all Malian stakeholders.

The council expressed “full support to all efforts aimed at creating the necessary conditions to foster a return to constitutional order in Mali, and its strong condemnation of any form of unconstitutional change of government.”

The council called all actors to ensure the restoration of security and stability in the region, and urged the Government to put in place reliable and efficient mechanisms to ensure civilian protection.

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