West African leaders on Saturday did not agree on an action to take against military juntas in Burkina Faso, Guinea and particularly Mali, insiders at the meeting revealed
A meeting to make a decision was postponed until July; the next summit meeting for the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), one senior source in the Ghanaian presidency who asked to remain anonymous told AFP.
Representative from Mali, Burkina Faso or Guinea were visible in the audience of the summit attended by most of the 15-member countries.
The leaders were expected to decide whether to keep, lighten or lift retaliatory measures on Mali, imposed in January after its military regime announced an intention to rule for another five years.
“This present summit will re-examine and assess the situations in Mali, Guinea and Burkina Faso in light of recent developments within the region and global context,” said Ghana’s President Nana Akufo Ado who opened the summit.
“Our objective has always been to find ways to help these countries return to constitutional order.”
Guinea, Burkina Faso and Mali are currently suspended from ECOWAS bodies.
Guinea’s military overthrew president Alpha Conde last September, Burkina Faso’s President Roch Marc Christian Kabore was overthrown in January and in May 2021, Malian Army led by Vice President Assimi Goita that led a coup d’etat in 2020 ousted President Bah N’daw and Prime Minister Moctar Ouane.
Guinea and Burkina Faso juntas have vowed a return to civilian rule in three years, risking further punitive measures from the bloc. Mali has already been slapped with sanctions that include closed borders and suspended trade and financial exchanges, except for basic necessities.