Mali: tense situation in the north between armed groups and government

In Mali, the climate is deteriorating between the main armed groups in the north, which signed a peace agreement with the government in 2015. On Saturday, the former rebels of the Coordination of Azawad Movements (CMA) claimed to have shot down, in the north, a plane of the national army that would have attacked one of their positions, and this Sunday, they announce that they are preparing to defend themselves militarily against the junta in power in Bamako.

Kidal, northern Mali, in 2020 (illustration photo). AFP - SOULEYMANE AG ANARA

By: RFI Follow


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In our regional correspondent, Serge Daniel

On the ground in northern Mali, several sources confirm: like the Malian army, the former rebels of the Coordination of Azawad Movements have considerably strengthened their positions.

An African diplomat posted in Bamako is worried and wonders: "It's getting tense, the former CMA rebels have brought out an arsenal of war and we can wonder where it comes from.


In a statement, the CMA says that using its DCA (defense against aircraft), it shot down this weekend in the north, a plane of the Malian army, which would have attacked one of its positions. The Malian government has not yet confirmed or denied the information.

Meanwhile, there is not much left of the peace agreement signed in 2015 between the two sides, observers note, fearing a resumption of hostilities.

The immediate challenge: who will occupy the military camps that the United Nations mission, MINUSMA, is preparing to leave in the northeast?

The ex-rebels are clear: unlike in the north-west of the country, where the Malian army recently inherited the camp in the locality of Ber left by the UN mission, there is no question of letting Malian troops settle in new camps, especially in the Kidal region, under the control of the CMA.

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