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AU suspends Mali after coup — second suspension in three days

BY Ebunoluwa Olafusi

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Mali has been suspended from the African Union following the second military coup in the country.

The development comes three days after the Economic Community of West African State (ECOWAS) suspended Mali from its fold over the coup.

In a statement by its Peace and Security Council, the AU said Mali is barred from participating in its activities and that the suspension will stay in place “until normal constitutional order has been restored”.

The union said it was “deeply concerned about the evolving situation in Mali and its negative impact on the gains made thus far in the transition process in the country”.

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It called for a return to the transition, the release of all political prisoners, including the detained interim President Bah Ndaw and interim Prime Minister Moctar Ouane who are under house arrest, and for the authorities to respect the 18 months transition period original stipulated in the agreement.

“AU decides… to immediately suspend the Republic of Mali from participation in all activities of the African Union, its Organs and institutions until normal constitutional order has been restored in the country,” the union said.

“The AU strongly urges the Malian military to urgently and unconditionally return to the barracks, and to refrain from further interference in the political processes in Mali.”

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The union also called “for the creation of conducive conditions for an unimpeded, transparent and swift return to the civilian-led transition, based on the agreed transition roadmap for Mali”.

It warned that if the military fails to comply, the council will not hesitate to impose targeted sanctions and other punitive measures.

Bah N’Daw, the interim president, and Prime Minister Moctar Ouane were last week detained at a military base in the wake of the coup.

Assimi Goita, Mali’s vice-president, had accused the duo of trying to sabotage the country’s transition.

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Goita, who was the leader of the military junta that ousted President Ibrahim Keita from office in 2020, later announced that he had removed N’Daw from office.

Two days after seizing power from N’Daw, Goita declared himself president of the country.

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