facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

AU backs military role in Mali

Nov. 14, 2012 at 12:43 PM   |   Comments

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, Nov. 14 (UPI) -- Members of the African Union announced support for a regional force to restore security in north Mali, an AU security commissioner said.

Members of the Economic Community of West African States were called on by the U.N. Security Council to develop a plan for a neutral force for Mali.

Militant groups, some of which are aligned with al-Qaida, claimed autonomy for northern Mali following a series of political upheavals early this year. Some of the Islamic rebels there are accused of war crimes.

Ramtane Lamamra, peace and security commissioner for the African Union, was quoted by the BBC as saying his bloc supported a contingent backed by troops from Burkina Faso, Niger and Nigeria.

"This deployment aims to respond to the request by the Malian authorities to regain the occupied regions in the north of the country, dismantle the terrorist and criminal networks and restore effectively the authority of the state over the entire national territory," he said.

The French government, the former colonial power in Mali, said it would provide logistical and training support for the African mission.

The BBC notes that a military engagement in north Mali is expected to last several months, requiring support from concerned governments outside the region.

U.S. officials last month, in meetings in Algeria, stressed that a political process may need to work in parallel with military efforts in Mali.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Recommended UPI Stories
Featured UPI Collection
trending
Notable deaths of 2014 [PHOTOS]

Notable deaths of 2014 [PHOTOS]

Most Popular
1
Brady Morton's body discovered three days after Port Huron Float Down
2
Boko Haram overruns Nigerian police academy
3
Amanda Curtis launches Montana Senate campaign after Walsh bows out
4
Oil spill reported in North Dakota
5
U.S. attempted rescue of James Foley, ISIS demanded $132M ransom
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback