The tandem of West African diplomats will have a lot to do. The United Nations Deputy Secretary General, the Nigerian Amina Mohamedand the UN special envoy for West Africa, the Chadian Mahamat Saleh Annadif, have indeed taken head-on the thorny file of the 49 Ivorian soldiers detained since July 10 at the Gendarmerie School in Bamako. These are already the subject of an intense showdown between Côte d’Ivoire and Mali.
On August 9, the two UN representatives traveled to Abidjan at the request of the United Nations Secretary General, the Portuguese Antonio Guterresdetermined to use his influence and who had already commissioned his deputy, Jean-Pierre Lacroix, in Mali on July 24. Amina Mohamed and Mahamat Saleh Annadif were received in the capital by Alassane Ouattaraassisted by Faithful Sarassorohis chief of staff.
In their presence, the Ivorian Head of State reaffirmed the ambition of Côte d’Ivoire to be part of the efforts of the UN and Minusma for a return to peace and constitutional order in Mali, which Alassane Ouattara sees as an essential partner in the fight against terrorism in the Sahel. According to our sources, however, the president said that the future involvement of Ivorian blue helmets in Mali would also depend on the outcome of the current crisis.
Assimi Goïta inflexible?
Amina Mohamed and Mahamat Saleh Annadif flew to Bamako the day after their meeting with Alassane Ouattara. They were received there on August 10 by Colonel Like Goitapresident of the military transition.
Mali: Abdoulaye Maïga, the gun carrier of Goïta?
According to our sources, however, no progress has been made, the Malian government sticking to its positions and still demanding an official apology from the Ivorians, ce that Abidjan refuses to concede. The Ivorian authorities indeed accept for the moment only to evoke “shared wrongs”, a formulation which however is not enough for the Malian putschists.
Amina Mohamed and Mahamat Saleh Annadif then left Bamako to go to Togo on August 11, where Faure Essozimna Gnassingbe has not given up all hope of bringing mediation to a successful conclusion, for which he has entrusted his Minister for Foreign Affairs Robert Dussey, also close to Assimi Goïta. The UN diplomats took stock of their efforts and the strong reluctance of the Malian junta.
They then traveled to Abuja, Nigeria, to the headquarters of the ECOWAS commission, where the subject of the 49 Ivorian soldiers was once again discussed. While a virtual summit of the heads of state of the organization should be held soon, Amina Mohamed and Mahamat Saleh Annadif spoke with the chairman of the commission, the Ghanaian Omar Aliou Toray.
If the virtual meeting of the West African organization should primarily concern the file of the Guinean transition, the fate of the 49 Ivorians could also be there. be evoked.