Mali: UN welcomes announcement by armed groups of withdrawal from eastern town

22 June 2015 | Press Releases

Mali, 19 June 2015 – The United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) has welcomed the announcement made last night by the armed groups of the so-called “Platform” to withdraw from the town of Menaka, in accordance with the arrangements for a cessation of hostilities.

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UN peacekeepers from the Niger contingent on patrol in Menaka, Mali. Photo: MINUSMA/Marco Dormino

“The MINUSMA endorses the courageous and responsible decision by the movements of the “Platform,” which demonstrates their commitment to promote the peace process to the benefit of all Malians,” said the Special Representative and Head of MINUSMA, Mongi Hamdi.

The announcement came the same day than a UN Security Council press statement, urging the armed groups of the Platform to disengage from the town of Menaka, in the Gao region.

In that statement, the Council members also reiterated their support to the Agreement on Peace and Reconciliation in Mali, signed last May in Bamako by the Government and the “Platform” armed groups.

The Council said it “looks forward” to the signing of this Agreement by armed groups Coordination, which is scheduled for June 20, 2015.

“This positive development, as well as the imminent…signing of the Agreement for Peace and National Reconciliation tomorrow in Bamako by the movements from the Azawad coordination are clear and reassuring signs, both for the Malian population and for the international community,” said Hamdi.
“The peace process is on track with the commitment of stakeholders to respond to Mali’s people aspirations,” he summarized.

In coordination with the relevant authorities, the MINUSMA also said it would accelerate the implementation, in the locality of Menaka, of the security provisions included in the Arrangement.
This arrangement is temporary and will remain in effect until the establishment of relevant mechanisms under the Peace Agreement of 15 May 2015 and according to its implementation schedule, said the UN mission in Mali.