Armed militants in Mali have stepped up attacks against the United Nations peacekeeping mission and Malian security forces, continuing a deadly campaign aimed at destabilizing the West African nation.
The militants laid siege to a hotel in central Mali last week, leaving 17 people dead. The attack began early August 7 and ended after 24 hours when Malian security forces stormed the hotel in the city of Sevare. The assailants killed nine civilians, five of whom worked as contractors for the U.N. mission, and four Malian soldiers. An unknown number of attackers died in the assault. On August 9, gunmen killed 10 civilians in a village in Northern Mali, and on August 10, three Malian soldiers were killed in central Mali when their patrol vehicle hit a landmine.
These incidents show that despite the peace agreement signed in June between northern armed groups and the government, much work still needs to be done to restore security to the country.
These incidents show that despite the peace agreement signed in June between northern armed groups and the government, much work still needs to be done to restore security to the country. The United States commends all parties – the Government of Mali, the CMA and the Platform – for their commitment to resolving their differences through dialogue, not violence.
Implementing the peace agreement won’t be easy or immediate. It will require dedication and steady, sustained attention in order to succeed.We urge all parties to commit to resolving future differences through the mechanisms within the accord.The parties have arrived at this agreement through a patient process of dialogue and negotiation.This peace will be achieved through hard work, mutual understanding, and cooperation. We urge all parties to the agreement to maintain the same patience, dialogue, and will to reconcile differences as they move forward.