Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

AFRICA NEWS

Ebola in Nigeria: First death outside of Lagos

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Niger : Top Oppostion figure to be questioned in baby trafficking scandal

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Liberia: President dismisses top officials who ignored call back

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

The deleted tweets of Manuel Valls

Read more

DEBATE

How to Stop Ebola: WHO Says Cases Could Exceed 20,000 (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

How to Stop Ebola: WHO Says Cases Could Exceed 20,000

Read more

WEB NEWS

'Ice Bucket Challenge' angers anti-abortion activists

Read more

#TECH 24

Tomorrow's Transport Today

Read more

FOCUS

Mothers and children leaving Honduras at all costs

Read more

  • French businesses ‘hoping for a new Thatcher’

    Read more

  • UN says 43 peacekeepers captured in Golan Heights

    Read more

  • Peru seizes record 6.5 tonnes of Europe-bound cocaine

    Read more

  • Russian troops have entered Ukraine, says Kiev

    Read more

  • Pakistan army to mediate between PM, protesters

    Read more

  • PSG face Barcelona, Ajax in tough Champions League draw

    Read more

  • In pictures: Billions of locusts invade Madagascan capital

    Read more

  • Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie say ‘I do’ in France

    Read more

  • Erdogan sworn in as Turkey's president

    Read more

  • Assad cannot be partner in fight against terrorism, says Hollande

    Read more

  • New Ebola case in Nigeria brings death toll to 1,552

    Read more

  • Video: 'Neither Baghdad nor the US can defeat the Islamic State'

    Read more

  • Platini will not run against Blatter for FIFA presidency

    Read more

  • Air France pilots announce week-long strike in September

    Read more

  • New French economy minister takes swipe at 35-hour work week

    Read more

  • Uzi shooting by 9-year-old rekindles gun debate

    Read more

  • Mother of American journalist asks IS leader for his release

    Read more

  • UN probe accuses Syrian regime, Islamists of ‘crimes against humanity’

    Read more

  • Uruguayans sign up to grow marijuana at home

    Read more

Africa

Global donors pledge more than $600 million for Mali

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2013-01-29

International leaders pledged more than $600 million, including more than $120 million from Japan and $96 million from the United States, at a donors conference Tuesday to support military operations against Islamists and humanitarian aid in Mali.

African leaders and international officials pledged hundreds of millions of dollars at a donor conference Tuesday for military operations against Islamist militants in Mali and humanitarian aid.

Malian President Dioncounda Traore thanked the "entire international community" as nations offered cash or support at the top-level meeting at the African Union headquarters in Ethiopia's capital.

While over $600 million was so far pledged Tuesday -- including over $120 million from Japan and $96 million from the United States -- how much would be spent on backing the key African-led military force was not immediately clear.

"The whole world has gathered here, it's very good for Mali," Malian Foreign Minister Tieman Coulibaly added.

The conference comes a day after French-led forces seized Mali's fabled city of Timbuktu from Islamists as part of an offensive against the radicals who have controlled the country's vast desert north for 10 months.

African leaders and officials, as well as representatives from the United Nations, European Union and China are also taking part in the conference.

"We all know the gravity of the crisis," AU Commission chief Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma told the conference, which is hoped to provide funding for the African-led force for Mali (AFISMA) supporting Malian troops.

"It is a situation that requires a swift and effective international response for it threatens Mali, the region, the continent and even beyond."

The AU has promised to contribute $50 million, but has estimated the AFISMA force will cost $460 million.

There is, however, no clear figure for how much the conference is aiming to raise, although diplomats have suggested some $700 million will be needed for AFISMA and the Malian army, in addition to heavy humanitarian costs.

Alassane Ouattara, president of Ivory Coast and chairman of 15-nation Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), which has led the deployment of AFISMA, said there was an "urgent need to speed up the deployment".

A woeful lack of cash and logistical resources has hampered AFISMA in its support of Malian troops against Islamist forces who seized swathes of the arid north after a coup last year.

So far, just 2,000 African troops have been sent to Mali or neighbouring Niger, with the bulk of the fighting borne by some 2,500 French troops, who launched a military offensive on January 11.

"We are gathered here today to provide AFISMA ways to carry out its work of restoring the sovereignty and integrity of Mali, prerequisites for lasting political stability," said French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius.

Mali's president also called on the wider Muslim world to support efforts and show that "Islam at its heart does not serve as a cover for terrorism and organised crime."

UN leader Ban Ki-moon warned ahead of the conference there was a "moral imperative for the entire international community" to provide support.

Ban, speaking at the 54-member AU's two-day summit meeting which closed late Monday, and which was dominated by discussion on the conflict in Mali, said he was "determined to help the people of Mali at this critical hour."

UN political affairs chief Jeffrey Feltman told the conference that the situation was "urgent", warning that "the insurgent groups in Mali pose a threat to national, regional and international peace."

Support pledged would allow Malian and AFISMA troops to "quickly consolidate the gains made and to stabilise areas that have been wrestled from control from the insurgent groups," he added, noting "the challenge before us is enormous".

AU chairman and Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn thanked France for "timely support" in its military intervention in Mali, as well as praising west African troops in AFISMA.

"Forging strong coordination... will enable us to speedily restore the territorial integrity of the country, and progressively address the challenges of terrorism and extremism in the region," he said.

(AFP)

Date created : 2013-01-29

  • MALI

    French-led operation looks north after Timbuktu

    Read more

  • MALI

    Mali Tuareg rebels say they control Kidal, Islamists gone

    Read more

  • MALI

    Euphoria as French, Malian troops take historic Timbuktu

    Read more

COMMENT(S)