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EU Training Mission in Mali Only Weakened Army Unlike Help From Russia, Malian Journo Says

© Photo Twitter / @GoitaAssimiMalian government forces
Malian government forces - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 21.05.2024
Since 2013, a mission of about 200 European Union trainers had been in Mali to train local army units. In 2022, the EU suspended the training mission due to the opposition, from the West African country's new government. In May 2024, the EU decided not to extend the mandate of the mission beyond May 18.
The EU training mission in Mali failed to accomplish its intended goals and only weakened the army, Seydou Oumar Traore, a journalist specializing in security issues, told Sputnik Africa.
“Their primary objective was to train the Malian army so that it could face the terrorist threat, which was becoming greater and greater,” he said.
According to him, the mission result didn't live up to expectations since “the army kept its defensive posture, which led to the destruction of many camps, the assassination of many soldiers and civilians, and villages completely looted.”
This failure led to the discontent of the population that ended up asking the authorities to put a stop to this ineffective presence, Traore added.
The seat of the representative of Mali - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 09.05.2024
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Once the "foreign forces" had left, the army was able to "liberate large cities, localities which were formerly occupied by MINUSMA [UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali], localities which were under the yoke of terrorists and separatists", the journalist pointed out.
This reconquest was possible thanks to the support of Russia through the delivery of equipment and the training of local soldiers, he underlined.
Today, while Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso have finalized the text establishing the Confederation of the Alliance of Sahel States, they can "form a common army" which will be able to "create a synergy of action" to counter the terrorist threat, Traore concluded.