ECOWAS Imposes Sanctions on Mali's Military Council
The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) decides to impose new sanctions on members of the ruling military junta in Mali for postponing the elections.
On Monday, Following a conference of the 15-nation group in Ghana's capital Accra, ECOWAS Commission President Jean-Claude Kassi Brou told AFP that the group "has decided to sanction all those implicated in the delay," in organizing elections that were set for February 27 in Mali.
According to Brou, Mali has "officially written" to Ghanaian President Nana Akufo-Addo, who now holds the rotating president of ECOWAS, to inform him that the Sahel country could not hold elections as scheduled.
Brou announced that "All the transition authorities are concerned by the sanctions which will take immediate effect." adding the travel bans and assets freezes targeted family members of the Junta as well.
Following the session on Sunday, ECOWAS issued a statement saying it "highly deplores the lack of progress" in Mali's election preparations.
ECOWAS leaders gave Guinea six months to organize elections and stressed the urgency of releasing ousted President Alpha Conde, who has been under house arrest since the coup.
The situation has sparked international concern, prompting a visit to Mali by a UN Security Council delegation late last month.
On October 26, Mali declared ECOWAS Special Representative Hamidou Boly persona non grata, accusing him of "acts incompatible with his status". Boly had left the country the day after the decision was announced.
It is noteworthy that ECOWAS suspended Mali's membership in the organization and halted financial and commercial exchanges with it after the coup of August 18, 2020. Afterward, the group lifted these sanctions after the junta, led by Colonel Asimi Gueta, appointed a transitional civilian president and prime minister, and committed to returning power to elected civilians. within a maximum period of 18 months.