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UN's Secretary-General appeals to Mali's ruling junta

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The United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres, appealed to the military junta in Mali to announce an acceptable timetable for elections.

Guterres reacted to the junta's suggestion that they would remain in power for five years before holding a scrutiny.

"ECOWAS' decision established that if the Malian government presents an acceptable timetable and takes steps in that direction, there will be a gradual lifting of sanctions. And of course I am working with ECOWAS and the African Union to create conditions which can allow the government of Mali to adopt a reasonable and acceptable position to accelerate a transition which has already been underway for a long time", said the UN's Secretary-General.

After months of pressure, last week ECOWAS decided to close borders with Mali and impose a trade embargo.

"I hope to be able to make brief contact with the Malian government. I believe it is absolutely essential that the Malian government present an acceptable timetable for the elections", added António Guterres.

Mali's army initially promised to stage elections in February 2022, after staging a coup in August 2020.

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