The United States warmly welcomes the Malian delegation.
Mali continues to grapple with distinct yet interrelated crises: a security crisis as a consequence of both a rebellion waged by armed, primarily Tuareg groups in northern Mali and threats from terrorist and other extremist elements, a political crisis stemming from the military coup d’état, and a humanitarian crisis related both to the drought in the Sahel and the current conflict. The need for a strong, democratically elected government viewed as legitimate by the Malian people is critical to ensure credible political processes and negotiations with non-extremist groups in the north.
We are concerned with the interim government’s hesitancy to hold accountable members of the junta for the actions credibly ascribed to Captain Sanogo and his associates. They include the constitutional crisis they created; intimidation and harassment of members of the interim government; assaults, including beatings, stabbings, and forcing persons to engage in sexual acts at gunpoint and under the threat of death; kidnapping; and growing kleptocracy and corruption.
We are also gravely concerned about abuses in the north by armed rebels as well as extremist groups, including violence against civilians, killings, hostage-taking, pillaging, theft, destruction of cultural and religious sites, forced labor and hereditary servitude, and recruitment of child soldiers.
We make the following recommendations:
1. Make all efforts to accelerate an inclusive political process that returns Mali to a constitutional state; and
2. Identify and hold accountable all perpetrators of human rights abuses in the north and in Bamako through a transparent judicial process.