King Mohammed VI Wednesday addressed a message to West Africa Heads of State, stressing what he said was the "proven inefficiency" of "partial" approaches and "selective" actions that led to the acute crisis bedeviling Mali for over a year.
"The deep crisis rocking Mali is striking proof of the inefficiency of partial approaches, selective actions or haphazard responses to a complex, multidimensional and threatening reality in the entire region," the Moroccan monarch said in his message read by the kingdom’s Prime Minister Abdelilah Benkirane.
King Mohamed VI’s speech was delivered at the opening session of the Economic Community of West African States’ 42nd Ordinary Heads of State and Government Summit in the Ivorian political capital Yamoussoukro.
The Moroccan monarch observed that the current crisis “illustrates the relevance of an overall strategy and collective action, which Morocco has repeatedly advocated for years ago".
By his reckoning "obscurantist armed groups last year took advantage of the increased fragility of the Malian government, weakened by political divisions and military dissensions, to seize the north of the country."
The monarch described northern Mali as a “lawless zone, the den of multiple terrorist groups”.
He also blamed the crisis in the landlocked West African country on "transnational trafficking in weapons, drugs, illicit financial flows and migrants".
Mohammed VI also spoke about developing economic relations with West African countries.
Security in the sub-region marked by the Malian crisis, the transition in Guinea-Bissau, reviewing the ECOWAS Commission President report and renewing the organization’s functions top the summit’s agenda.
Experts interviewed by APA on the sidelines of the summit, which ends on Thursday, said it was “very likely" that President Alassane Ouattara will be elected for a second stint at the helm of ECOWAS.
Appointed on February 17 2012 in Abuja (Nigeria) by his peers, Ouattara is credited with a "positive track record" although "the large projects he leads are yet to completed", including the Malian crisis with the war in the north against armed Islamist groups, and the challenges of political transition in Guinea-Bissau still unresolved.
About $950 million dollars (CFA 464.750 billion) is needed to finance military operations including the full scale deployment of African troops in the war-ravaged north of Mali, Ivorian Foreign Minister Charles Koffi Diby said on Monday.
Source African Press Agency
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