News / Africa

Niger's President Backs Mali Intervention

Members of a Malian pro-government militia operating in government-controlled areas take part in a training session at their base in Sevare, about 600 kilometers northeast of the capital Bamako, Mali, November 12, 2012.Members of a Malian pro-government militia operating in government-controlled areas take part in a training session at their base in Sevare, about 600 kilometers northeast of the capital Bamako, Mali, November 12, 2012.
x
Members of a Malian pro-government militia operating in government-controlled areas take part in a training session at their base in Sevare, about 600 kilometers northeast of the capital Bamako, Mali, November 12, 2012.
Members of a Malian pro-government militia operating in government-controlled areas take part in a training session at their base in Sevare, about 600 kilometers northeast of the capital Bamako, Mali, November 12, 2012.
Anne Look
The crisis in northern Mali could enter a new chapter this week. Malian officials are expected to meet with delegations from two of the armed groups in the north, while the U.N. Security Council plans to consider a plan for regional military intervention to Mali.

West Africa leaders continue their "carrot-and-stick" approach against the armed groups, who seized control of Mali's three northern regions in April, just days after a military coup.

Mali's foreign minister is in Ouagadougou where Malian officials are expected to meet with delegations from two of the armed groups, the ones that are Malian-led - the Islamist sect Ansar Dine and Tuareg separatist movement the MNLA.

Map of MaliMap of Mali
x
Map of Mali
Map of Mali
It will be the first direct and official talks between Malian authorities and armed groups since the start of the crisis. The groups have agreed to ECOWAS-mediated negotiations to find a peaceful solution to the crisis.

But many believe that force still will be necessary against foreign fighters affiliated with al-Qaida's North Africa branch, known as al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb.

UN considers action

On Wednesday, the U.N. Security Council is expected to consider plans from the African Union and ECOWAS to raise a regional force of 3,300 soldiers to help the Malian army retake the north. African leaders want a U.N. intervention mandate.

U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has endorsed a one-year A.U. mission to Mali. But in his report last week, he said African leaders first need to work out additional logistics for the mission and that force should remain a "last resort."

Mali interim President Diouncounda Traore met Sunday with Niger President Mahamadou Issoufou in Niamey. Issoufou is a staunch supporter of military action. He told reporters that African countries must act quickly.

Seeking military intervention

The president said the people in northern Mali suffering abuses at the hands of these groups need to be liberated. He says if terrorists are allowed to dig in in northern Mali, they are going to attack neighboring countries.  He says ECOWAS carefully considered its operational plans for Mali and has the support of the African Union.  Mr. Issoufou says he is confident the U.N. Security Council will endorse the plan, regardless of the secretary-general's report.

Niger is among the West African countries that have pledged to contribute soldiers to the intervention force.

The U.N. Security Council could issue a mandate for the force before the end of the year, though regional observers say any offensive to the north is unlikely before the second half of 2013.

Malian President Traore said they will not wait that long. He said this problem poses a threat to global security. He said he does not think they will wait until September or October to act. And by "they," he says he does not mean just Mali and Niger, or just ECOWAS, or even just Africa. He said the entire world has spoken out in support of restoring Mali's territorial integrity, preserving its democracy and its secular nature. But, he said, the entire world also has said it must wipe out terrorism and organized crime.

You May Like

India PM Modi's party distances itself from religious conversions

BJP under fire for being slow to rein in hardline affiliate groups allegedly trying to promote a Hindu-dominant agenda by luring Muslims and Christians to convert to Hinduism More

Anti-Whaling Group Found in Contempt of Court

Radical environmentalists who threw acid and smoke bombs at Japanese whalers in the waters off Antarctica continue their campaign to disrupt Japan's annual whale hunt More

UN's Ban Urges End to Discrimination Against Ebola Workers

Ban was speaking in Guinea on the second day of a whistle-stop tour aimed at thanking healthcare workers of the countries at the heart of the epidemic More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacksi
X
December 19, 2014 12:45 AM
The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Putin Says Russian Economy Will Emerge Stronger

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country's sinking economy will not only recover but also become stronger, despite falling oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

All About America

AppleAndroid