In Mali, a protest scheduled for Wednesday afternoon in the capital, Bamako, has been banned by authorities. The protest was to be held against the presence of the French ‘anti-jihadist’ force in the country.
The BBC reports that Bamako governor’s chief of staff Daniel Dembélé said that the protest was banned supposedly because of restrictions put in place to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
The ban followed French President Emmanuel Macron having announced that France intended to reduce its military involvement in the Sahel. Macron said France could make changes due the arrival of special forces in Mali from other countries in Europe.
The BBC reports that animosity toward French forces being present in the Mali was manifest in social media posts during several previous demonstrations in Bamako.
Several National Transitional Council members were to lead the planned demonstration. The NTC is the legislative body of the transitional period formed following last August’s military coup. While elected civilians are, by agreement, to be brought back to power after 18 months, Mali’s transition remains dominated by the military, which is committed to military co-operation with France.
Umm Muhammed Umar