I join President Obama and all Americans in congratulating Ibrahim Boubacar Keita on his election as President of the Republic of Mali.
We also commend the interim government for securing a peaceful, inclusive, and orderly election, and applaud its efforts to improve the process and alleviate challenges throughout.
We urge Mali’s new government to build on these efforts in preparing for upcoming legislative elections – the next important milestone as Mali restores its democratic institutions.
The transparent and credible manner in which the election was conducted honors Mali’s democratic tradition, and reflects the progress that Mali has made over the past 18 months.
To ensure the best possibility of consolidating this progress, Mali’s new government must address the country’s most pressing challenges, including national reconciliation and security sector reform, which is why we particularly emphasize the importance of Malian civilian control and oversight of the military.