UN Secretary General calls for additional 2500 peacekeepers to be sent to Mali

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The United Nations Chief, Ban Ki Moon, has directed the UN Security Council to add at least 2500 peacekeepers in Mali following recent increased attacks on peace keepers in the African nation reports Reuters

A new UN report by the chief called for increasing the number raising the peacekeepers by 2,049 increasing the  force to 13,289 and additional 480 UN police which will increase to a total of 1,920 police personnel.  These additions are meant to increase a more productive peace force with more capabilities in intelligence gathering, surveillance, explosive disposal and protecting supply to convoys according to the report.

“It remains critical that MINUSMA (UN Police) urgently address outstanding gaps in force requirements, enhance its capabilities, including intelligence and use of technologies and continue to adjust its posture to be responsive to the deteriorating security situation,” Ban said.

The UN chief also asked the MINUSA  to establish a “special intervention team” in Mali’s capital Bamako and empower water police more to enable them to protect civilians and help Malian security forces combat transnational organized crime on the Niger river more.

At least 12 peacekeepers have been killed in Mali in recent attacks, latest being the death of Chinese peacekeeper and three civilians killed with over a dozen wounded in two UN sites in northern Mali on Wednesday, in an attack that has been claimed by  Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM).

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