EU ends part of Mali training mission, fearing Russian interference, Borrell says

Josep Borrell, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

© APA | Josep Borrell, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

# 11 April 2022 23:59 (UTC +04:00)

The European Union will halt part of its training of Mali's armed forces, the EU's top diplomat Josep Borrell said on Monday, citing a lack of guarantees from Malian authorities that Russian military contractors would not interfere in the work.

The decision is likely to add to international concern about the longevity of the U.N. peacekeeping mission (MINUSMA) and the European Union's EUTM and EUCAP missions, after France and its allies began withdrawing from Mali earlier this year.

"We have decided to suspend, to stop, certain formations of our training mission in Mali focused on the units of the armed forces of the Malian national guard," Borrell told a news conference following a meeting of EU foreign ministers.

"There are not enough security guarantees from the Malian authorities over the non-interference of the well-known Wagner Group," Borrell said, although he said the EU was not quitting the country.

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