The German government has extended for the last time the military mission of the Armed Forces in Mali until May 31, 2024, after which date Berlin will withdraw its troops from the African country.
The decision of the Executive has yet to be ratified by Parliament – where the tripartite coalition has a majority – but everything points to Berlin putting an end to its largest military deployment abroad.
The Bundeswerh (German Armed Forces) mission in Mali is composed of some 1,100 members and has been operating on the African country’s territory for almost eleven years. Berlin has acknowledged that it wants to refocus its security commitment in the Sahel region.
Thus, its main objective is to intensify civilian support and cooperation in the security sector by concentrating on countries such as Niger, Mauritania and the Gulf of Guinea states. In fact, the Bundeswehr continues to train soldiers on Nigerian territory.
The recent escalation in Sudan has shown us how the instability of a country can suddenly become an existential threat to the lives of our nationals,» said Defense Minister Boris Pistorius.
»Crucially, through our engagement in the Sahel, we continue to encourage and promote the growing ownership by Africans of security and stability on their own continent,» he added.
For her part, Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock warned that when Sahel countries »disintegrate,» the »tremor» is also felt in Europe. »We will remain committed to the people of the region in the future, civilian and military,» she assured.
Since mid-2013, the Bundeswehr has been involved in the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) to try to stabilize a country that fell into the hands of Islamist terrorists in 2012.
In the German ‘blue helmets’ camp, preparations have already begun for the withdrawal, for which 1,600 sea containers will be needed to bring material and weapons back to the European country.
The military mission in Mali has been repeatedly obstructed by the ruling military junta, which is considered to be close to Russia.
Source: (EUROPA PRESS)