The news from Bamako about the force used to prevent an opposition demonstration last weekend is worrying. Freedom of assembly and freedom of opinion are rights that must be upheld. We call on all parties – the Government, the opposition and civil society – to ensure that the presidential elections will be held transparently, fairly and peacefully in July and August. The elections constitute a crucial turning point for Mali and the further implementation of the peace Agreement.
The presidential elections in Mali are scheduled to take place in two rounds on July 29 and August 12, 2018. The Government is facing a public ballot for the first time since the peace agreement was signed in 2015.
The Malian opposition organised a rally in Bamako on 2 June. However, this was banned by the Government, citing the state of emergency which has been in place since 2015. The Malian security forces sought to prevent it and broke it up. Some 30 people were injured, including an opposition candidate and members of parliament.
Germany is broadly engaged in Mali, taking part in MINUSMA, the United Nations peace mission, as well as European Union military and civilian training and advisory missions, and is also providing development cooperation, promoting stabilisation and pursuing enable and enhance measures.