An extraordinary ECOWAS summit was held this Thursday, September 22 in New York to seal the fate of the Guinean and Malian juntas. At the end of the said meeting of West African leaders, it was decided to impose “progressive sanctions” against Guinea in the face of the junta’s intention not to return power to civilians within the planned timeframe. In addition, a “high-level mission” will be dispatched to Bamako to obtain the “immediate and unconditional” release of the 46 Ivorian soldiers held in Mali.
Meeting in New York on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly, the West African heads of state “decided to take sanctions against Guinea,” said ECOWAS Commission President Omar Aliou Touray. According to the conclusions of the summit contained in a document, “it was decided to take progressive sanctions on individuals and against the Guinean junta. “Very quickly, the current chairman of ECOWAS and the chairman of the ECOWAS Commission will draw up a list of people to be sanctioned and, in a gradual manner, apply these sanctions,” the text says.
A high-level mission to Bamako
In addition, the second issue addressed by the summit was the detention by Mali of 46 Ivorian soldiers. Again, all heads of state agreed to demand the “immediate and unconditional” release of the 46 Ivorian soldiers held in Bamako. To this end, a “high-level mission” composed of the Togolese, Senegalese and Ghanaian presidents will go to Bamako “very soon”, according to the President of the Commission.
It should be noted that in New York, all West African heads of state were present, with the exception of those of Mali, Guinea and Burkina Faso, which are led by juntas and suspended from ECOWAS. The sub-regional organization is clear: ” Putsch are unacceptable in the ECOWAS region,” said its commission chairman Omar Aliou Touray.