Britain will withdraw militarily sooner than expected

The United Kingdom announced on Monday, November 14, the early withdrawal of its soldiers currently stationed in Mali, highlighting in particular the junta’s use of force against the Russian paramilitary group Wagner.

The British contingent will leave (…) (UN peacekeeping mission) earlier than plannedSecretary of State for the Armed Forces James Heappey told the House of Commons.

“The responsibility for all this lies with Bamako”

We must be clear that the responsibility for all this lies with Bamako“, he added, referring to the rapprochement of the junta in power since 2020 with the paramilitary group Wagner, which has a reputation for being close to the Moscow regime.

The Malian government’s partnership with the Wagner group is counterproductive to long-term stability and security in the region“.The British Government”cannot deploy the national army to provide security when the host government is unwilling to work with us to create lasting stability and security”, insisted James Heappey.

Almost 300 British soldiers have been present in Mali since the end of 2020, as part of the deployment of the UN peacekeeping mission in the country launched in 2013 (Minusma), mainly with the aim of stabilizing the security situation in a country , who are victims of jihadists. attack.

The commitment was to last for three years, but faced with the increase in instability in the country, according to the Ministry of Defence, London decided to anticipate the withdrawal of its troops, who were to leave the country within the next six months.

France, the main country intervening militarily in Mali, particularly through Barkhane force soldiers, as well as its European partners announced in February their withdrawal from the country. The last French soldiers left Mali this summer after almost a decade of intervention.

Strained relations between Mali and its partners

Relations between the Malian authorities – dominated since August 2020 by the military – and its partners, especially the UN, have been strained in recent months.

After pushing out the former French ally, the ruling junta repeatedly verbally attacked Minusma, whose mandate was renewed in June for a year.


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