Mali armed group pulls out of constitution commission
The Coordination of Azawad Movements blames the Malian government for delaying the peace process.
An armed group in Mali that signed a major peace deal in 2015 said this week it was pulling out of efforts to draft a new constitution.
The new constitution is a key part of a peace and reconciliation process designed to return the country from military to civilian rule by March 2024.
In a statement issued on Friday, the Coordination of Azawad Movements (CMA) pointed out that it -- and almost all the other armed groups that signed the peace deal -- had in December suspended participation in the peace process because of the junta's "lack of political will to uphold it."
The decision to boycott the work of rewriting the constitution came just hours after Malian Foreign Minister Abdoulaye Diop accused the armed groups of "hampering" efforts to put the peace process in place.
The CMA statement said the "obvious deterioration" in moves towards peace was due to the Malian government's "clear decline in interest."
The CMA repeated its request for a meeting with international mediators to discuss the viability of the peace deal, which it had said in December was close to breaking down.
Mali witnessed two military coups, in August 2020 and May 2021. Under international pressure, the current military government has agreed to allow a return to civilian rule in March 2024.
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