France is calling for strict adherence to Mali’s transition timetable by military authorities and reiterated France’s condemnation of the coup in the country.
The French foreign minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian tweeted that “France shares the absolute priority given by the Economic Community of West African States (Ecowas) to the presidential elections of 27 February 2022, under the strict conditions outlined by the heads of state and government, in their 30 May statement”.
Mali has had two coups in nine months with the military junta leader Col Assimi Goïta declaring himself transitional president.
Noting Ecowas’ decision to suspend Mali over the latest coup, Mr Le Drian said France backed the establishment of a monitoring committee on the transition by the bloc.
He said the adherence to the criteria verified by Ecowas was essential for maintaining international support for Mali.
France’s President Emmanuel Macron said the country would withdraw its troops, seen as critical to the fight against jihadist militants if Mali moved towards embracing radical Islam.