Panafrican News Agency

Mali announces opening of investigation into murder of Mauritanian nationals

Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso (PANA) - The government of Mali reacted on Wednesday evening, following "the assassination of Mauritanian citizens on Malian territory", stressing that an investigation had been opened to clarify the facts.

In a statement, the Malian government explained that "Colonel Assimi Goita had ordered the opening of an investigation to clarify the situation, and had decided to send a high-level mission to Nouakchott, as soon as possible.

This, he said, was intended to undertake vigorous actions to further strengthen the brotherhood and cooperation between the two countries, especially in the field of management of common borders, defence and security of persons and property.

The same source underlined that the Malian government was informed that the Malian ambassador to Mauritania was summoned to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Cooperation and Mauritanians Abroad on 8 March 2022 to inform him of the assassination of Mauritanian citizens on Malian territory, towards the common border.

"Mali is annoyed by the occurrence of this unfortunate incident at a time when this brotherly and friendly country, the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, is providing support, particularly for the normal supply of the Malian people who are suffering from the illegal, illegitimate and inhumane sanctions of ECOWAS and WAEMU," the statement said.

The Malian government said that "at this stage, no evidence implicates the Malian Armed Forces (FAMA), which respect human rights and always act with professionalism in their fight against terrorism".

It specified that the Malian authorities would spare no effort to seek and find the culprits of these heinous crimes to bring them before the competent courts.

Reports of Mauritanian civilians killed by Malian defence and security forces in the localities of Bassikounou and Fassala on the border with Mali have provoked strong reactions from national and international opinion.

-0- PANA TNDD/JSG/SOC/BBA/RA 10March2022