Instead, the operation in Mali and the Sahel region, known as Operation Barkhane, will be replaced by an international operation in which France will participate.
But the French presence in the region will undergo extensive changes, according to Macron, which justifies, among other things, the decision that it is not possible to continue working with governments that negotiate simultaneously with armed Islamist groups.
– Radical Islam in Mali with our soldiers there? The French president did not tell the Journal du Dimanche last May, in the wake of the country’s military coup.
Reactions to the military coup
Macron criticized the ECOWAS decision to recognize Colonel, who is also the coup leader, Asimi Guetta as president after the second coup in less than a year, saying it “creates bad case precedents for Africans”. ECOWAS, which initially excluded Mali from the organization, recently offered its support for the second transitional government in Gotha.
The president said the long-term French presence in the country cannot replace political stability.
More details will come at the end of June, Macron promised, according to Agence France-Presse. But so far he has appealed to the United States to contribute to and strengthen the international force that is now being planned.
Asking for help from the United States
France has about 5,100 soldiers deployed in the five Sahel countries, namely Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger. Sweden participates with 150 soldiers in the Barkhane International Task Force Takoba.
TT asked Defense Minister Peter Holtqvist (S), who declines to comment on Macron’s comments.