UN Supports France in Mali As More Civilians Pushed from Country

Gérard Araud, French Ambassador to the UN. Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Clergier

Gérard Araud, French Ambassador to the UN.
Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Clergier

On Monday January 14, the United Nations Security Council discussed France’s intervention in Mali – also known as Operation “Serval” – after which the French Ambassador to the UN, Gérard Araud, declared, “The nation’s partners express a thorough understanding and firm support of their intervention in Mali.”

Araud confirms, “all of our partners have recognized that France is acting with conformity to the UN’s charter and international law. France’s priority is to put in place resolution number 2085 as fast as possible.”

This United Nations Security Council Resolution 2085 was adopted on December 20, 2012, authorizing the African-led International Support Mission in Mali (AFISMA), which recalls other resolution regarding the Northern Mali conflict. According to Ban Ki Moon, the UN General Secretary, these resolutions aim to “fully restore Mali’s constitutional order and territorial integrity.”

The French ambassador to the UN asserts that Operation “Serval” must “encourage this political process. The operation is a result of a state of emergency and once the Islamic offensive has been contained, we must go through with resolution 2085 and encourage the political process of AFISMA.”

The USA ambassador to the UN, Susan Rice, applauds France for “adequately treating the Islamic menace.” However, the Americans remain skeptical regarding the structure of AFISMA due to the rapid changes in the geographic situation since December 2012, and they doubt the capacities of the Malian and West-African ally forces.

During the night of Monday January 14, French planes bombarded the small Malian city of Diabali, 350 km north of the capital Bamako, which had in the same day been taken over by tens of Islamists. So far four geographically crucial Malian cities taken over by Al-Qaeda-linked rebels have been bombarded by French aerial attacks: Lere, Nampala, Douentza, and Diabali.

On Tuesday January 20, Francois Hollande visited the French naval base in Abu Dabhi and declared the French pursuit deployed in Mali “on the ground and in the air.” Up until now, 750 members of the French army have been sent to Mali, and the French president declares that this number will continue to increase.

700 French militants are placed in the French naval base of Abu Dhabi – the only outsourced French military base since the Algerian war – to whom Hollande announced that they might need to be employed in Mali. “Soon we will let the African nations take over the battle, and it will be their place to conquer back the rest of Northern Mali,” Hollande stated. The deployment of African troops, according to Hollande, should take “at least a week.”

On Tuesday January 15, the UN Refugee Agency announced that close to 150,000 refugees have spread to neighboring countries as a result of the conflict in Mali – including Mauritania, Burkina Faso, Algeria, and Niger – and close to 230,000 people have moved around the country as a result of the Al-Qaeda-linked groups causing conflict in Northern Mali. Furthermore, The World Food Program has estimated a lack of 129 million dollars to support the nutritional distributions to Mali.

Comments

  1. Another well-done and informative piece on the French intervention in the African theatre. Chapeau encore! Now, what happened in Somalia? I understand the French intervention was far from successful.

Trackbacks

  1. […] can say that France wanted to enter into a military operation,” French UN delegate Gérard Araud stated on January 14th.  He added, “For the last twelve months, the French looked for a […]

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