Leaders of Senegal and Mauritania worried about Mali
By Godfrey Olukya 18-9-2012
Leaders in Mauritania and Senegal are worried about security threats from the Islamist takeover of northern Mali.
They have warned against terrorism and the partition of the West African nation. They say all should be done to restore order in that area.
Senegalese President Macky Sall, while on his visit to Nouakchott yesterday, said that with his Mauritanian counterpart Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz they are of the opinion that the volatile situation in Mali after Islamists took control of northern Mali in March this year is a serious security threat in the region.
Sall said,’We want peace to prevail in Mali and neighboring countries. If the Malian factions want to engage in dialogue, we encourage them,but for those who choose the path of terrorism and the partition of Mali, they will face the consequences.’
In a joint statement released by the two leaders, they urged for return to constitutional order in Mali state.
They said, ‘Sahel region security is threatened by what is happening in Northern Mali. There is now growing cross-border crime including trafficking in illegal arms, drugs and human beings, money-laundering and terrorism.’
Mali’s interim President Dioncounda Traore has called for for ECOWAS military assistance to
recover the occupied territory in the north and combat Islamist extremists there.
The Islamists have started practicing Sharia law in some of the areas they have occupied in northern Mali. They have banned drinking and watching football matches on televisions saying they are un-religious.
The UN Security Council has not yet authorized ECOWAS operations in Mali.