U.N. keeps sanctions on persons blocking peace in Mali

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A Senegalese soldier of the UN peacekeeping mission in Mali MINUSMA (United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilisation Mission in Mali) patrols in the streets of Gao, on July 24, 2019, a day after suicide bombers in a vehicle painted with UN markings injured one French, several Estonian troops and two Malian civilians in an attack on an international peace-keeping base in Mali. - Malian authorities have struggled to improve security since France intervened in 2013 to drive back Islamic insurgents in the north. Around 4,000 French troops are deployed under Operation Barkhane alongside the MINUSMA peacekeeping force of around 15,000 soldiers and police. (Photo by Souleymane Ag Anara / AFP) (Photo credit should read SOULEYMANE AG ANARA/AFP/Getty Images)
A Senegalese soldier of the UN peacekeeping mission in Mali MINUSMA (United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilisation Mission in Mali) patrols in the streets of Gao, on July 24, 2019, a day after suicide bombers in a vehicle painted with UN markings injured one French, several Estonian troops and two Malian civilians in an attack on an international peace-keeping base in Mali. – Malian authorities have struggled to improve security since France intervened in 2013 to drive back Islamic insurgents in the north. Around 4,000 French troops are deployed under Operation Barkhane alongside the MINUSMA peacekeeping force of around 15,000 soldiers and police. (Photo by Souleymane Ag Anara / AFP) 

The U.N. Security Council has voted unanimously to extend its sanctions regime in Mali targeting those who delay implementation of a 2015 peace agreement.

The French-sponsored resolution adopted Thursday extends the sanctions regime until Aug. 31, 2020, and the mandate of the panel of experts monitoring their implementation until Sept. 30, 2020.

France’s deputy U.N. ambassador, Anne Gueguen, says the unity of the council signals its commitment to peace in Mali, which has been in turmoil since an uprising in 2012.

Gueguen says the sanctions “are an instrument for stabilization” that has “contributed to change the behavior of a number of individuals in Mali.”

She says the Security Council’s message is that “if you block the implementation of the peace agreement you expose yourself to sanctions.”

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