For more than 50 years, Germany has been supporting Mali and the Sahel through development cooperation programmes. Since 2013, the German Armed Forces have been involved in various missions in Mali and the Sahel, in recent years mainly within the framework of the MINUSMA peacekeeping mission. In the meantime, the Federal Government has proposed to the German Bundestag to extend the MINUSMA mandate for the last time in May 2023. In view of the planned withdrawal of the German Armed Forces from MINUSMA by May 2024; but also under the changed geopolitical circumstances following the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine, the question arises as to what a future German and international engagement in Mali and the Sahel region can look like.
What should be considered in an orderly withdrawal from Mali beyond logistical or military issues and what political impact can the withdrawal of European contingents have on the situation in the country? How can Germany and Europe continue to fulfil their security and development responsibilities and goals in the region? How can regional diplomacy or African regional organisations be supported in promoting regional security and political dialogue in the Sahel?
These and other questions were at the centre of the discussion between Patron Dr Karamba Diaby MP, Christian Klatt, representative of the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung in Mali, and Anass Maiga, Mouvements de résistance civile de Gao (La Force-G), hybrid from Gao, Mali, moderated by DAS Secretary General Sabine Odhiambo.
To give an insight into the current mood of the Malian population, Christian Klatt began by quoting from the “MALI-METRE”, published for the thirteenth time in November 2022, which is available for download here (only available in the original French version).