Mali govt. dismisses rebels’ merger, declaration as null and void
By Addoul Karim Ba/WADR Correspondent
As the politicians and soldiers in Bamako continue to engage in bickering, the rebel groups who captured the country’s northern region last April, are forming a united front to impose Sharia, thus breaking the secularism that has existed there for decades.
The National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (MNLA) and Ansar Dine over the weekend announced a merger to create the Islamic Nation of Azawad.
That came after several days of discussions in Gao.
But as West Africa Democracy Radio (WADR) Bamako correspondent reports, the interim government in the capital has dismissed the move, describing the merger null and void.
The reaction of the Malian government to the merger between MNLA and Ansar Dine came through Mr. Amadou Tourè, its Communication Minister and spokesman, who stated that Mali remains one and indivisible.
Minister Toure said that nothing has changed for the Malian government, which priority is still to get back those territories being occupied by the rebels in the north of the country.
“For us there is no merger, because for us there is no room for a republic of Azawad and no room for a so-called Islamic republic of Azawad. Mali is one and indivisible, Mali is a secular republic and will remain secular as long the people of Mali will want it,” the Malian government Communication Minister said.
“For us nothing has changed, there was already a movement requesting independence, so if another movement starts asking for the same thing, it won’t change anything. This is what we want to stop,” the Mali’s government spokesman added.
The merger over the weekend between Ansar dine and MNLA is happening at a time when the situation in Bamako is still confused.
The pro junta supporters keep asking for the appointment of March 22nd coup leader Captain Amadou Sanogo as head of the transition, while Sanogo himself has been silent since last week.
Interim President Diocounda Traore is presently taking medical treatment in France, after sustaining head injury when angry protestors stormed his Bamako office and beat him up.Tweet