Mali's Transitional Government Declares Representative Of ECOWAS Persona Non Grata

Mali's Transitional Government Declares Representative of ECOWAS Persona Non Grata

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 26th October, 2021) The transitional government of Mali declared on Monday the representative of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) persona non grata, saying that his actions were "incompatible with his status."

It is not clear what brought on the expulsion of Hamidou Boly. However, it came at a time of growing pressure on Mali's military rulers to return power to civilians after the country's prime minister suggested on September 26 that presidential and legislative elections scheduled for early next year could be postponed.

"(The representative of ECOWAS) was informed of the decision of the Government of Mali to declare him persona non grata because of his actions incompatible with his status," the foreign ministry said in a statement.

The envoy was requested to leave the country within 72 hours.

Mali has experienced two military coups in the past two years. During the first, which took place on August 18, 2020, President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita was ousted from power. The military group appointed Ba Ndaw as interim president, who was arrested by soldiers on May 24. The Military Council, led by Vice President Assimi Goita, took over the country and announced presidential and parliamentary elections next year. The constitutional court of Mali declared Goita president of the transitional period.

ECOWAS, West Africa's main political and economic bloc, has been pressing Mali to respect its commitment to hold presidential and legislative elections next February following an August 2020 military coup.