Remarks by the DPR Albana Dautllari at the Security Council meeting on Mali – MINUSMA

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August 28, 2023

Thank you, Madam President,

I thank SRSG Wane for his comprehensive update on the ongoing withdrawal of MINUSMA. We commend the dedication shown by peacekeepers and personnel who have worked very hard towards fostering peace and stability in Mali over the past decade.

We thank Ms Beatrice Abouya for her remarks.

Madam President,

Albania takes note of the letter of the Secretary-General outlining the plan for MINUSMA’s transfer of tasks and is encouraged by the priority the UN has shown in managing this complex process.

Allow me to focus on three key areas:

Firstly, the importance of a safe and orderly withdrawal of personnel and peacekeepers from Mali cannot be understated. The volatile security situation, compounded by the presence of terrorist groups, presents further challenges for MINUSMA. Therefore, the Malian Transitional Government’s unwavering cooperation is required to facilitate a withdrawal by 31st December.

We are concerned by the recent hostilities in Ber (13th August) and condemn the attacks against MINUSMA, posing a significant risk to the safety and security of personnel. Albania stresses the need for coordinated mechanisms for the handover of tasks and sites with the Transitional Government and urges the full cooperation of signatory armed groups.

Secondly, we are deeply concerned about the fragility of the 2015 Peace Agreement. We urge parties to remain committed to implementing the Agreement and refrain from engaging in hostile activities, violating the ceasefire. As the SG highlighted, such tensions risk seriously undermining the entire peace process.

As MINUSMA departs, many gaps will be created in Mali. It is therefore crucial the Transitional Government focus on advancing the political transition and making tangible gains to return to Constitutional order, within the agreed timelines with ECOWAS. While creating the conditions for an inclusive political and civil space.

Thirdly, in the face of persisting human rights violations and abuses in Mali, we call on the Transitional Government to abide by its international obligations to protect civilians and to carry out security operations in accordance with international humanitarian law. In this regard, the partnership with the Wagner group raises serious concerns and will not bring any peace or stability to Mali.

Similarly, the humanitarian situation is dire and will be further impacted by the withdrawal of MINUSMA. Humanitarian assistance and guaranteed access remain imperative!

In conclusion, Madam President, Albania commends the UN for leading a swift withdrawal, and stresses that UN and Security Council engagement in Mali continues to remain critical. We call on the Malian authorities to fully cooperate with MINUSMA to ensure an orderly and safe withdrawal, while fully respecting the SOFA until the final departure.

Thank you.

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