World | Africa

March 30, 2012

ECOWAS Threat of an Embargo on Mali in 72 Hours

The Economic Community of West Africa States (ECOWAS) threatened, Thursday, March 29, Mali of a "diplomatic and financial embargo" if the ruling junta since March 22 does not restore constitutional order within seventy-two hours after a meeting of heads of state in Abidjan.

Thursday, a delegation of heads of state in West Africa, led by the chairman of ECOWAS, the Ivorian president, Alassane Ouattara, canceled a visit to Bamako, where she was to meet with the junta, following a demonstration in favour of the coup at the airport in the Malian capital. Ouattara and his counterparts Blaise Compaore (Burkina), a mediator in the crisis, Thomas Yayi Boni (Benin), Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (Liberia) and Mahamadou Issoufou (Niger) have finally met in Abidjan for talks in camera lasted all afternoon at the airport. 

Among the political and diplomatic sanctions announced planned closure of the borders of member states of the organization and a travel ban within the region for members of the junta. Economic sanctions include an "asset freeze" regional leaders of the junta and their "associates" and the closure in Mali, a landlocked country, access to ports of the coastal countries of ECOWAS. Finally, financial sanctions include the freezing of accounts of Mali in the West African central bank and non-supply accounts for the Malian government by private banks in the regional context. 

The situation remains unstable 

Heads of State " invite "finally the African Union to "strengthen its own sanctions "against the junta, said Mr. Ouedraogo. Summit Tuesday in Abidjan, the Heads of State of ECOWAS had demanded the return to constitutional order in Mali after the coup of 22 March against President Amadou Toumani Toure,  Mali and had suspended the organization and brandished threat to use force. 

In Mali, the situation remains unstable. Supporters and opponents of the ruling junta clashed Thursday at the headquarters of the front antijunte in Bamako. "There are three serious injuries" after these incidents, said a hospital source. The front antijunte held at its headquarters a rally, which was disrupted by supporters of the coup, witnesses said. 

In the north, the Tuareg rebellion and an Islamist armed group attacked the strategic town of Kidal, it was learned from the belligerent forces. Northern Mali has experienced since mid-January a major offensive Tuareg rebels and Islamist groups, who managed to take several cities. Kidal is in a difficult position for several days, and some observers believe that his fall is imminent. The ruling junta since the military coup of 22 March cited the failure of the government against the rebels to justify his coup. 

Text by lexpress.mu
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