The state announces an agreement to integrate 26,000 former fighters into the army

Mali’s transitional government has agreed with armed groups that signed a peace agreement in the north of the country to integrate 26,000 former rebels into the Malian army, according to a government press release sent on Friday to AFP.

Signed in 2015 by the Malian government and groups of ex-rebels from the Tuareg-dominated north of the country, this so-called Algiers Peace Agreement provides for a process of grouping fighters from the undersigned movements with the aim of integrating them into the public. the service. , including within the armed forces, orDisarmament, demobilization and reintegration(DDR) in civilian life. This integration should lead to the restructuring of the national army, and more representative of the population of the north in particular. This army should then be gradually redeployed to the main cities in the north in the form of mixed battalions made up in equal proportions of the Malian armed forces and fighters from the previous insurgency and pro-government armed groups.

The state of Mali and the armed groups decidedMerge 26,000 ex-fightersIn the army, according to a government statement sent to Agence France-Presse, Friday, after a meeting held in Bamako all this week in the presence of Malian Prime Minister Chogoel Koukala Maiga and representatives of armed groups and Algeria, according to a government statement. This integration must be doneInto two tranches of 13,000 (ex-combatants), the first of which is divided according to the share agreed upon between the two parties‘, says this press release without further details, in particular the start date of the operation. The second installment will be distributedover two years, particularly 2023-2024According to the same source.

In addition, the parties agree to “Create and run an ad hoc committee“Specially responsible for drafting proposals”To manage each case on a case-by-case basis for senior civilian and military executives of the signatory movementsto integrate them intoseries of commandsThis committee should be createdAs soon as possible“says the text. A spokesman for the Coordination of the Azawad Movements (CMA), the former Tuareg-dominated rebellion, said his movement “I accepted the government’s offerTo create this committee andTalk about the chain of command problemInside the reconstituted national army of the future. “The question is obviously about our officers. What will be their place in the next army. Until this issue is resolved, we cannot speak of significant progress.Alo Ag Muhammed told AFP on Friday.

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The implementation of the Algiers Accord, with its provisions for the integration of ex-combatants, as well as the restoration of state authority, is one of the main political components of a way out of the crisis in Mali. In addition to purely military action. On July 31, Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune called on the ruling army in Mali to implement the Algiers Agreement and return to legitimacy.As soon as possible“Going towards elections. Mali’s ruling colonels in early July gave in to West African demands for civilians to return to power, publishing a new electoral law and timetable that includes presidential elections in February 2024.

Mali, a poor and landlocked country in the heart of the Sahel region, was hit by two military coups in August 2020 and May 2021. The political crisis goes hand in hand with a serious security crisis that has been going on since 2012 and the outbreak of separatist and jihadist rebellions. in the north.

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