France welcomes the transformation today of the African-led International Support Mission in Mali (AFISMA) into the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA). The African forces’ transition into blue helmets marks the beginning of a new phase for Mali, that of stabilization.
MINUSMA now has almost 6,000 blue helmets, who are already deployed in Mali, including in all towns in the north, as well as in Kidal. As the Security Council decided in its resolution 2100, MINUSMA will have a maximum of 11,200 soldiers, 1,440 police officers, as well as civilian experts. MINUSMA will continue to increase in strength over the next few months.
Under the authority of the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative, Mr. Bert Koenders, MINUSMA is tasked with stabilizing the country and lending support to the Malian authorities in the political transition process. In particular, it must support the implementation of the interim agreement signed in Ouagadougou on June 18 as well as the holding of the presidential elections, scheduled to take place on July 28 and August 11, and the parliamentary elections.
France lends its full support to the UN and the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative in fulfilling their mission. As authorized by the Security Council, the French forces could lend support to MINUSMA if necessary, and within the bounds of their capabilities.
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