facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Malian forces need overhaul, France says

April 2, 2013 at 10:27 AM   |   Comments

BAMAKO, Mali, April 2 (UPI) -- Malian military forces need a complete overhaul to maintain national security and territorial integrity, a French military general said.

The French military responded to a request from former colony Mali to help address a threat from foreign rebels and al-Qaida fighters who seized territory following an early 2012 coup.

A European training mission, led by French Brig. Gen. Francois Lecointre, said trainers should be in Mali for more than a year.

"Objectively, (the army) must be entirely rebuilt," he was quoted by the BBC as saying. "The Malian authorities are well aware of the need to reconstruct the army, very aware that Mali almost disappeared due to the failings of the institution."

Rights groups have expressed concern that Malian forces may seek revenge on ethnic populations in north Mali that are seen as supporting militant forces.

The French government said most of its combat forces should be out of Mali by July. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon last month called for an African force to integrate into a U.N. mission that would replace French forces.

Fighting continues in the rebel-held north.

Topics: Ban Ki
© 2013 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.
Most Popular
1
Poland buys medium-range missiles from U.S. Poland buys medium-range missiles from U.S.
2
Great white shark circling surfers photographed by drone Great white shark circling surfers photographed by drone
3
Watch: News anchor resigns live on-air to sell pot, '[Expletive] it, I quit' Watch: News anchor resigns live on-air to sell pot, '[Expletive] it, I quit'
4
Rutgers sophomore Caitlyn Kovacs dead after visit to Delta Kappa Epsilon frat house Rutgers sophomore Caitlyn Kovacs dead after visit to Delta Kappa Epsilon frat house
5
Cop-killer suspect Eric Frein possibly spotted, in standoff Cop-killer suspect Eric Frein possibly spotted, in standoff
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback