ECOWAS: ECOWAS hails Mali Peace Accord

Abuja, Nigeria (PANA) - The ECOWAS Commission has hailed the Mali Peace and Reconciliation Agreement signed in Algiers, Algeria, 1 March 2015, which it called the culmination of several months of dedication and tenacious commitment of all parties involved in the Malian talks.

In a statement issued in Abuja on Tuesday, and made available to PANA, the Commission said it is particularly pleased that the Agreement preserves the national sovereignty of Mali, its territorial integrity, unity as well as the secular and republican nature of the State in accordance with the Malian Constitution.

It said while ECOWAS is encouraged by the inclusiveness of the talks which led to the Agreement, it urges all other concerned actors to promptly append their signatures to the agreement.

''ECOWAS takes this opportunity to express its unfaltering solidarity with the people of Mali and shares the aspirations of the Malian People for peace, progress and development while hoping the signing of the Agreement will symbolise a path to attaining these aspirations,'' the statement said.

''ECOWAS wishes to express its gratitude to President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, the government and the people of Algeria for their commitment and dedication to the Malian Peace Process, and congratulates all other stakeholders who have contributed to the attainment of this milestone,'' it said.

PANA reports that the accord was signed on Sunday between Mali's government and six rebel groups from the country's troubled north.

The mediation talks were led by Algeria and the UN, and involved government ministers and the rebel groups that are mostly Arabs and Tuaregs

Mali's northern region was seized for nine months until French and African forces helped to take it back in 2013.

Key aspects of the accord include the reconstruction of the country's unity in such a way that respects its territorial integrity as well as its ethnic and cultural diversity; creation of elected regional assemblies, more representation of the north in national institutions, an internationally-funded Northern Development  Zone and then a national conference that is expected to lead to a 'final and comprehensive' peace pact.
-0- PANA SEG 3March2015

03 march 2015 12:22:39

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