The UN Security Council presided over by Kazakhstan held an open briefing to discuss the situation in Mali on Jan. 23, 2018.
The meeting was briefed by the United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, Mr. Jean-Pierre Lacroix, who reported on the current situation in Mali, on the activities of the Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), as well as on the progress in the implementation of the Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation in Mali.
In his speech, Mr. Jean-Pierre Lacroix recalled that on September 20, 2017, the parties to the conflict committed themselves to the final cessation of hostilities, and welcomed the approval of the updated timetable for the implementation of the Peace Agreement with deadlines in March, 2018. He also noted the progress made in the implementation of a number of provisions of the Agreement in the political, institutional, defense, security, judicial and economic development sectors, as well as in the delivery of basic services. At the same time, he stressed that the security situation in Mali was worsening, especially because of the significant increase in asymmetric attacks on security forces, MINUSMA peacekeepers and civilians in the northern regions of the country, committed by terrorist groups.
The Members of the Council noted positively the cessation of hostilities between the parties and the adoption of an updated timetable for the implementation of the Agreement. In doing so, they expressed concern at the delays in the implementation of the instrument, particularly in the areas of decentralization, disarmament, demobilization and reintegration. Delegations were concerned about the grave humanitarian situation in the country and the increased intensity of terrorist attacks on civilians, military and peacekeeping personnel. In this regard, speakers called on the Government of Mali, as well as other members of the Mission, to continue efforts to combat terrorism and to establish peace in the country.
Speaking at the open briefing, the delegation of Kazakhstan noted that the measures to strengthen security should be implemented along with the promotion of economic development in an integrated and coherent manner, backed by long-term sustainable financing and the development strategy of the central and northern regions of the country.
The meeting was also attended by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Mali, Tièman Coulibaly, who confirmed the absence of alternatives to a peaceful solution to the conflict in the country and assured that the newly appointed government would make every effort to stabilize the situation in the country.