1.  Takes  note  of  the  Report  of  the  Chairperson  of  the  Commission  on  the  situation  in Mali [PSC/AHG/3(CCCXXVII)]. Council also takes note of  the statements made by  the current Chairman of  the  Economic  Community  of  West  African  States  (ECOWAS),  the  ECOWAS  Mediator,  the President  of  the  ECOWAS  Commission,  the  United  Nations,  and  by  the  core  countries,  namely Mauritania, Niger  and Algeria,  as well  as by  South Africa  and  Togo,  as AU Member  States  in  the United Nations Security Council; 

2.  Recalls its earlier communiqués on the situation in Mali;


3.  Reaffirms  the unflinching commitment of  the AU and  that of all  its Member States  to  the national unity and  territorial  integrity of  the Republic of Mali, which cannot be  the subject of any discussion  or  negotiation,  and  Africa's  determination  to  spare  no  effort  to  ensure  their preservation. Council also reaffirms the AU's utter rejection of terrorism and the recourse to armed rebellion to further political demands;


4.  Expresses its deep concern at the seriousness of the situation in northern Mali, marked by the  increasing  consolidation of  control of  the  region by  the armed,  terrorist and  criminal groups. Council notes with concern the presence in northern Mali of different armed and terrorist groups, such as Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), Ansar Dine, the Movement for Unity and Jihad in West Africa  (MUJWA)  and Boko Haram.  Council  further notes  that  this  situation  poses  a  serious threat to regional and  international peace and security and, as such, calls for urgent and effective action by the entire international community; 


5.  Strongly  condemns  the  violations  of  human  rights  perpetrated  by  the  various  armed, terrorist  and  criminal  groups  which  occupy  the  northern  part  of  Mali,  and  the  senseless  and unacceptable destruction of  the cultural, spiritual and historical heritage of  this  region, notably  in Timbuktu,  which  is  a  serious  violation  of  international  law,  and  urges  that  the  perpetrators  be brought to justice before the relevant international jurisdictions. Council also notes the continuing deterioration of the humanitarian situation in the region, and stresses the need for urgent action to allow the delivery of food aid to the affected populations. Council reiterates the gratitude of the AU to Algeria, Burkina Faso, Mauritania and Niger,  for hosting Malian  refugees and  for  their  support and  assistance.  Council  also  thanks  all  humanitarian  agencies  providing  support  to  the  affected populations;


6.  Reiterates the full support of the AU to the ECOWAS efforts aimed at resolving the crisis in Mali. In this regard, Council pays tribute to President Alassane Dramane Ouattara, President of Côte d’Ivoire and  current Chairman of ECOWAS, President Blaise Compaore, President of Burkina Faso and Mediator in the Malian crisis, President Goodluck Jonathan, President of Nigeria and Associate Mediator, and the other members of the ECOWAS Contact Group on Mali, as well as to President Thomas Yayi Boni, President of Benin and Chairman of the AU, for their commitment and sustained efforts. Council also notes with satisfaction the action of the core countries. Council welcomes the interaction  that  has  developed  between  ECOWAS  and  the  core  countries,  and  encourages  all stakeholders to continue on this path, in accordance with its decision of 20 March 2012, in Bamako [PSC/MIN/COMM.(CCCXIV)];


7.  Endorses  the  communiqués  issued  by  the  41st Ordinary  Session  of  ECOWAS  Assembly  of Heads of State and Government, held  in Yamoussoukro, on 28 and 29  June 2012, and  the second meeting of the ECOWAS Contact Group on Mali, held in Ouagadougou, on 7 July 2012. Council also welcomes the adoption, on 5 July 2012, by the UN Security Council of resolution 2056(2012); 


8.  Reiterates  its  strong  condemnation  of  the  physical  assault  against  the  interim  President, Mr. Dioncounda Traore, and requests the Chairperson of the Commission, in collaboration with the President of the ECOWAS Commission, to put in place, with the support of the UN, an international commission of  inquiry  to  shed  light on  the  assault  and  to  identify  its perpetrators  and  sponsors, with a view  to bringing  them  to  justice. Council  requests  the  current authorities, working  closely with ECOWAS, to facilitate the return to Mali of the  interim President, to enable him to  fully and effectively assume his responsibilities;


9.  Reiterates  the  urgent  need  to  strengthen  the  transitional  institutions,  to  enable Mali  to address  the  serious  challenges  it  faces,  particularly  in  the  northern  part  of  the  country.  In  this regard, Council demands an end  to  the unacceptable  interference of  the military  junta and  their civilian supporters in the management of the transition and the effective dissolution of the National Committee for the Recovery of Democracy and the Restoration of the State (CNRDRE). Council calls for the early  finalization of the  list of  individuals whose action  is  impeding the transition, to allow for  the  immediate  imposition  of  sanctions  by  the  AU  and  ECOWAS.  Council  requests  the  UN Security Council and other AU partners to support such sanctions;


10.  Urges the interim President and the Prime Minister to immediately commence the required consultations with the Malian political and civil society actors, with a view to forming an expanded national  unity Government,  as  requested  by  ECOWAS,  the AU  and  the UN.  Council  requests  the Chairperson  of  the  AU  Commission  and  the  President  of  the  ECOWAS  Commission,  in  close consultation with the Mediation and with the support of the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for West Africa and other partners, on the basis of the communiqué of the  Ouagadougou  Contact  Group  meeting,  to  facilitate  the  holding,  as  soon  as  possible,  of consultations among the Malian stakeholders,  in Bamako, for the formation of the Government of national  unity  by  31st  July  2012,  in  accordance with  the  decision  of  the  Contact Group meeting. Council  emphasizes  that  the  formation  of  this  Government  will  mark  the  completion  of  institutional normalization and pave the way for the lifting of the suspension measure taken by the AU,  as well  as  for  greater mobilization  of Africa  and  the  rest  of  the  international  community,  in support to the efforts of the transitional authorities; 



11.  Encourages dialogue with groups willing to negotiate on the basis of the respect of the unity and  territorial  integrity of Mali,  and  the  total  rejection of  armed  rebellion,  terrorism  and  related criminal  activities.  In  this  regard,  Council  reaffirms  its  support  to  the  efforts  of  the  ECOWAS Mediator and the Contact Group, and stresses the need  for continued coordination with the core countries; 


12.  Reiterates  its  determination  to  impose  sanctions  against  terrorist  and  criminal  groups operating in northern Mali, as well as against any other armed group that impedes the search for a solution to the crisis and the efforts of ECOWAS and the AU.   In this regard, Council calls upon all Member States concerned to extend full cooperation to the Commission to expedite the finalization of  the  list of armed,  terrorist and criminal groups operating  in  the northern part of Mali,  for  their inclusion  on  the  list  of  terrorist  groups  established  by  the  AU,  in  conformity  with  communiqué PSC/PR/COMM.(CCCXVI), adopted at its 316th meeting held on3 April 2012;



13.  Recalls  its communiqué PSC/ PR/COMM. (CCCXXIII) of 12 June 2012, authorizing  ECOWAS, in collaboration, as appropriate, with the core countries, to put  in  place the required security and military arrangements, to achieve the following objectives: (i) ensure the security of the transitional institutions, (ii) restructure and reorganize the Malian security and defense forces, and (iii) restore State authority over the northern part of the country, as well as fight against terrorist and criminal networks.  Council  welcomes  the  measures  taken  by  ECOWAS  in  this  regard,  including  the dispatching of a technical assessment mission to Bamako, with the participation of the AU. Council reiterates  its call on all Member States and  the  international community as a whole,  for  them  to provide the necessary technical, logistical and financial support; 


14.  Welcomes  the  launching  by  the AU  Commission,  during  the  consultative meeting  held  in Addis  Ababa,  on  23  June  2012,  of  the  process  towards  the  development  of  a  strategic  concept articulating,  in  a  holistic manner,  the  political,  security  and military measures  towards  the  early resolution of the crisis in Mali. Council calls for the early finalization of this concept with ECOWAS, in  collaboration  with  the  core  countries,  the  UN,  and  other  partners.  Council  stresses  that  this document and the planning conducted by ECOWAS must be mutually reinforcing. Council expresses its intention to consider and adopt this concept as quickly as possible, before its submission to the UN Security Council, to enable the latter to further consider the request of ECOWAS and the AU, in accordance with paragraph 18 of resolution 2056 (2012); 


15.  Calls upon the African Commission on Human  and People’s Rights to investigate the human rights situation in northern Mali, including the atrocities committed against the Malian military and their  families  in Aguel'hoc,  in  January 2012, and  to submit a comprehensive  report with concrete recommendations on the way forward; 


16.  Decides to remain actively seized of the situation.

Posted by Tchioffo Kodjo

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