Mali: Following Renewed Fighting in the North, Numerous Political Parties Call for Dialogue

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In Mali, various political parties are advocating for dialogue to salvage the 2015 peace agreement, as the Malian Armed Forces (Fama) and fighters from the Permanent Strategic Framework (CSP) have engaged in multiple clashes in the northern part of the country since late August.

Calm returned on September 18th, 2023, to Léré, following the attack on the military camp in this town in the Tombouctou region the day before. The attack was claimed by the CSP (Permanent Strategic Framework), which brings together most of the armed groups that signed the 2015 peace agreement and accuses the Malian transitional authorities of breaking this agreement.

The Malian army reported 5 deaths, 20 injuries, and 11 missing in Léré this morning. The Malian Armed Forces (Fama) also claim to have killed about thirty enemies. This toll is contested by the CSP, which had taken control of Léré before retreating and has not disclosed its count.

Facing this renewed fighting in the North, eleven years after the 2012 civil war and eight years after the signing of a peace agreement, many Malian political parties, representing different perspectives, express their concerns and issue appeals to attempt, while there may still be time, to save the peace.

The Party for National Renaissance (Parena) “urges the transitional authorities to promote national unity” and invites armed movements in the North “to exercise restraint by remaining open to dialogue.” In response to the “carnage” caused concurrently by jihadist groups, Parena, which communicated after the Bourem attack and before the one in Léré, calls on Malians to “set aside secondary debates” in favor of dialogue “with all compatriots who have taken up arms.”

The Rally for Mali (RPM) of the late Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta (Mali’s president from 2013 to 2020) “advocates for dialogue”: “Everything must be resolved by the peace agreement,” says its spokesperson Sékou Niamé Bathily, who believes that this agreement “effectively combats terrorism” and reminds that “the authorities are the guarantors of national unity.”

Soukaina Sghir

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