Germany to end participation in UN peacekeeping mission in Mali

© Seyllou, AFP

Germany will end its participation in a UN peacekeeping mission in Mali by the end of next year, a government source told AFP on Wednesday after months of operational snags.

"By the end of 2023 at the latest, German soldiers are to end their involvement in the UN blue helmet mission MINUSMA," the source said.

Britain and Ivory Coast had already said earlier this week they would be withdrawing from the mission.

According to the German source, officials from the chancellery, the defence ministry and the foreign ministry have reached an agreement in principle to pull out the troops.

A final decision on whether to continue in Mali will be made next Tuesday at a meeting attended by Chancellor Olaf Scholz, the source said.

A foreign ministry source said talks were still ongoing and a final decision had not yet been made.

The German military have been in Mali since 2013 with a presence of up to 1,400 soldiers as part of the MINUSMA mission.

The German troops are in part meant to make up for the loss of French soldiers, after Paris pulled out its forces from the country earlier this year.

French troops had been in Mali for almost 10 years helping to fight jihadist groups that pose a growing threat in the Sahel.

But they withdrew after a breakdown in relations as the junta turned away from France and towards Russia in its fight against jihadism.

The defence ministry on Wednesday said Mali had not granted the required permissions for its reconnaissance drones since October 11.

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