Mopti: Protest march against foreign forces in Mali

The people of Mopti, in a massive mobilization, under the leadership of the 'Faso Ko' platform, marched on Wednesday to protest the presence of foreign forces in Mali: the French Operation Barkane, the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Mission for stabilization in Mali (MINUSMA) and G5 Sahel, noted the AMAP on the spot.

This is the last assessment of forty Malian soldiers killed by the simultaneous attack on the Boulkessi and Mondoro posts that broke the camel's back. The march left the central roundabout of Sévaré, in front of the high school Hamadoun Dicko, for the base of the MINUSMA, in the Sévaré airport area where the marchers handed a motion to the officials of the UN Mission.

On this distance from the RN 6, the unbridled crowd chanted: "Down with France and MINUSMA". She waved placards and banners on which one read "France and MINUSMA accomplices of the Malian crisis", "Barkane, MINUSMA clear of our borders".

"The time is indeed, too much is too much. We, the people of Mopti, are protesting today against the presence of Barkane, the MINUSMA and the G5 Sahel who have other visions, contrary to the mandate of their mission "read the spokesperson of the marchers, Malamine Coulibaly , before handing over the document to MINUSMA.

Mr. Coulibaly, after having stressed that "nobody will do Mali for us, recalled that" it is Africans who liberated France from the German yoke "and that" the state policy with France and MINUSMA, in the management of the Malian crisis, has led our country to disaster ".

The six-point motion requires MINUSMA, France and the Malian authorities "the departure of all foreign forces and the French military advisers unconditionally, the operational presence of the Armed Forces and Defense throughout the territory with the freedom of initiatives and actions, the provision of security for all telephone and satellite communications and the return of airport control towers to the Army of Mali "

The marchers demand, also, in their motion to ensure "the protection of people and their property, to build the social fabric with an honest dialogue between the ethnic groups and the creation of a climate of trust between the populations".

Boureïma Maïga, a 50-year-old butcher, estimates that Mali has suffered too much from this crisis. "It's time to tell the truth. Today in the Region, you can not go to Bandiagara at 60 kilometers from Mopti, without escort. If you cross the river, you are no longer in Mali, 'he says.

"Our brothers and sisters are killed all day long, without cause. The peasants can not go to the field anymore. In the face of attacks, MINUSMA says that its mission is stabilization, Barkane sleeps on both sides. More serious, there are questions that still remain unanswered, "he continues.

He notes that "FAMAs often lack fuel or ammunition, but never rebels. Who refuels them with fuel and ammunition? Who trains them in the use of weapons? He asks, arguing that "Mali is a victim of a global conspiracy". "It must be denounced and corrected," he concludes.

For Mariam Samaké, widow of a soldier killed during the attack on the Dioura post in 2013, "things are clear today: MINUSMA is blowing hot and cold". It connects the UN Mission of duplicity. "Let them leave and we manage ourselves to manage our situation," she says.

According to the marchers, a copy of the motion will be handed over to the regional governor for the national authorities "so that the situation is thoroughly analyzed and arrangements are made accordingly".

This march, very followed and supervised by the police, proceeded without incident. It has, all the same, paralyzed the economic activities of the city all the day. Schools, markets and workshops remained closed. Traffic was disrupted by the lack of inter-urban transport and women, who had not made arrangements the day before, were roaming around the deserted market.


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