Mali announces its withdrawal from the Sahel-G5 military alliance

So far, five countries in the Sahel have fought terrorism with a joint military force. Now Mali wants to withdraw from the alliance. The exit comes at a time of significant political tension.

Mali has announced its withdrawal from the Group of Sahel States (G5) and its joint anti-jihadist force. “The government of Mali decides to withdraw from all organs and entities of the G5 Sahel, including the joint force,” the West African country’s government said in a statement on Sunday evening. She justified her decision by saying that she would not be allowed to chair the G5.

The G5 was formed in 2014 from the Sahelian states of Mali, Mauritania, Burkina Faso, Niger and Chad. In 2017, the five countries set up a joint force which currently numbers around 5,000 soldiers to fight the jihadists who are strengthening in the region.

Tensions between Mali and France

A G5 summit was due to be held in the Malian capital of Bamako in February this year to give Mali the G5 presidency. This meeting “has still not taken place”, denounce the Malian leaders in their press release. Mali’s internal political situation is only used as a reason for this. But in reality, “manoeuvres from a state outside the region” which “desperately tries to isolate Mali” are behind it. It was not specified which country it was.

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