Mali postpones presidential election

The ruling junta in Mali on Monday announced the postponement of presidential elections scheduled for February 2024 which was aimed at returning civilian leaders to power in the conflict-ridden West African nation.

The government spokesperson, Abdoulaye Maïga told journalists in Bamako that the dates initially scheduled for the election would be “slightly postponed for technical reasons”, adding that a new date is to be announced at a later date.

The military seized power in Mali more than two years ago and the timetable for the transition has been delayed before.

A constitutional referendum planned for February 2023 was not held until June and local elections planned for June have still not taken place.

The security situation is very bad in the north and centre of Mali.

Islamists close to the terrorist militias Islamic State and al-Qaeda control large areas of the country on the edge of the Sahara.

At the request of the military junta of Colonel Assimi Goïta, the UN stabilisation mission with around 12,000 peacekeepers would withdraw by the end of the year.

The Malian army has turned away from former European partners such as the ex-colonial power France and is fighting the terrorists with the help of Russian mercenaries.

Neighbours, Burkina Faso and Niger also terrorized by Islamists in the common border region, are also ruled by the military after coups.

The latest coup in Niger in July triggered international anger and a regional crisis.

France announced on Sunday that it would withdraw its soldiers from Niger by the end of the year.

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