General

Mali bans NGOs funded or supported by France with ‘immediate effect’

“The transitional government has decided to ban, with immediate effect, all activities carried out by NGOs operating in Mali with funding or material or technical support from France, including in the humanitarian field,” read a statement released by acting Prime Minister Col. Abdoulaye Maiga late on Monday.

He said the step was in response to France’s recent decision to halt development assistance to Mali.

A French Foreign Ministry statement last week accused Mali’s junta of having “allied itself with the (Russian) Wagner military company,” allegations that Maiga rejected as “fanciful and unfounded.”

He termed it “a subterfuge intended to deceive and manipulate national and international public opinion for the purpose of destabilizing and isolating Mali.”

Maiga asserted that Mali has “no regret” over the halt in assistance by “a French junta specialized in giving dehumanizing aid.”

France used its aid activities as “a means of blackmailing the government and … in the active support of terrorist groups operating on Malian territory,” he added.

Earlier this month, France also formally wrapped up its decade-long Operation Barkhane, a counterterrorism mission in Africa’s Sahel region.

The operation was paused since February after France announced its military withdrawal from Mali, which was completed with the departure of the last French troops in mid-August.

Source: Anadolu Agency