ECOWAS suspends Mali in second coup in nine months | News in Ghana

West African leaders condemned the coup and called for the restoration of democracy, but an end to the imposition of new sanctions.

West African leaders suspended Mali from their regional bloc in response to last week’s coup but stopped short of imposing new sanctions.

Leaders of the 15 -member Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) held an emergency summit in Ghana’s capital, Accra on Sunday to agree on the Malian military response appointing a president and prime minister for the second time in nine months.

Mali’s neighbors and international powers fear that the latest uprising will undermine commitment to hold a presidential election next February and damage the regional fight against armed groups linked to al-Qaeda and ISIL. (ISIS).

Speaking after the meeting, Ghana’s Foreign Minister Shirley Ayorkor Botchway said Mali’s suspension “from ECOWAS would take immediate effect until the deadline at the end of February 2022”, to which the country’s interim leaders “would have been handed over. in a democratically elected government ”.

The bloc’s last community also called for the urgent appointment of a new civilian prime minister and the formation of an “involved” government.

Although it did not announce sanctions like the ones it imposed after last August’s coup, which saw members temporarily closing their borders in landlocked Mali and halting financial transactions.

Nor does it call new interim President Assimi Goita on descent. The army colonel, who led the coup in August as well as the uprising last week, was declared president on Friday.

However, the statement said, the head of the transitional government, the vice president and the prime minister should not under any circumstances be candidates in the planned presidential election. “The date of 27th February 2022 that has already been announced for the presidential election should be fully extended,” reasoned.

There was no immediate response from Goita, who attended the summit.

The 38 -year -old special forces commander was one of several colonels who ousted President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita last year. He also ordered the arrest on Monday of interim President Bah Ndaw and Prime Minister Moctar Ouane, hours after a cabinet reshuffle that left two members of the military.

Goita, who is Ndaw’s former representative, justified his actions by saying that there was contradiction within the transitional government and that he had not consulted, per the transitional chart, if the new cabinet had been elected.

Ndaw and Ouane left work on Wednesday while still in detention and were later released from house arrest.

In their statement, ECOWAS condemned the arrests, saying the move violated mediation measures taken after August coup. The block requested that Malian authorities immediately release the pair.

It also went on to express “strong and deep concerns about the current crisis in Mali”, which it said was “nearing the end of the aforementioned transition period, in the context of security challenges associated with the stop terrorist attacks and the COVID -19 Pandemic with severe socio-economic impact ”.

Other bodies including the United Nations and the African Union have also condemned the power grab. The UN Security Council said the resignations of Ndaw and Ouane were forced, while the United States had already gained the support of the security forces.

While France and the European Union threaten.

French leader Emmanuel Macron said in an interview with the Journal du Dimanche newspaper published on Sunday that Paris “cannot stay on the side of a country where there is no longer democratic legitimacy or a transition”.

And he warned that France would withdraw its troops from Mali if the country’s churches turn to “radical Islamism” under Goita’s leadership.

France has an estimated 5,100 troops in the region under Operation Barkhane, which covers five Sahel countries – Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger.

Understanding Mali’s chronic instability, as ECOWAS heads of state met in Ghana, attackers killed four civilians and a police officer in southern Mali, a former region. most escaped the turmoil in the country.

Unidentified men attacked a checkpoint near the town of Bougouni, about 100 kilometers (60 miles) from Mali’s borders with Ivory Coast and Guinea, just before dawn, a security official told AFP news agency about the condition did not want to be identified.

A local lawmaker confirmed the attack.

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