An extra-ordinary meeting of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Mediation and Security Council opened on Monday in Abidjan to review the political and security situations in Mali and Guinea Bissau.
A statement from the ECOWAS Commission said the meeting, comprising Ministers in charge of Foreign Affairs and Defence in Member States, would consider a memoranda presented by the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Desiré Kadré Ouédraogo, on the political and security situations in the two countries.
It said the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Burkina Faso and the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs of Nigeria would brief the meeting on the mediation efforts in Mali and Guinea Bissau, respectively.
In addition, the Chief of Defence Staff of Cote d’Ivoire and Chairman of the Committee of the ECOWAS Chiefs of Defence Staff would brief the Council on the outcome of the two-day Committee meeting which ended on Saturday, 15th September 2012 in Abidjan.
The Defence Chiefs have held several meetings towards the resolution of the crises in Mali and Guinea Bissau following the coups d’état which interrupted constitutional rules in both countries and the separatist rebellion in northern Mali.
The meeting of the Council comes in the wake of the formal request by the Government of Mali for ECOWAS military assistance to recover the occupied territory in the North of Mali and combat terrorism, as well as the unveiling by the Electoral Commission of Guinea Bissau of the chronogram for legislative and presidential elections in the country expected by April 2013. GNA