HomeUnited NationsMali: UN condemns second ‘cowardly’ attack in three days against peacekeepers

Mali: UN condemns second ‘cowardly’ attack in three days against peacekeepers

“The Secretary-General condemns this new attack on our peacekeepers, who, as you know, are just fulfilling the mandate in Mali given to them by the Security Council in extremely challenging conditions,” he told journalists in New York.

In a press statement, the Council members underlined that attacks targeting peacekeepers may constitute war crimes under international law. They went on to stress that involvement in planning, directing, sponsoring or conducting attacks against MINUSMA peacekeepers constitutes a basis for sanctions designations pursuant to Security Council resolutions.

A ‘very hard week’

Despite the challenging circumstances, MINUSMA personnel continue their mandated work, the UN Spokesperson said.
Four peacekeepers from Jordan were injured, one of whom died from his wounds after being evacuated.
UN Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric, said the incident also marked the sixth time a Mission convoy has been hit since 22 May.
Mr. Lacroix said “these crimes are a blatant violation of international law,” adding that they “shall not go unpunished.”
In a written statement issued later in the day on Friday, Mr. Dujarric said the Secretary-General recalled that attacks targeting United Nations peacekeepers may constitute war crimes under international law. The UN chief also called on the transitional authorities in Mali to “spare no effort in identifying the perpetrators of this attack, so that they can be brought to justice swiftly.”

‘Another cowardly attack’

Mr. Dujarric reported that the Mission recently helped to rehabilitate two bridges in the Mopti region which had been destroyed in earlier attacks. 
The UN chief also wished a prompt recovery to the injured peacekeepers.
Also strongly condemning the attack and echoing the words of the UN peacekeeping chief, the members of the UN Security Council, called on the transitional Government of Mali to swiftly investigate the attack against peacekeepers and bring the perpetrators to justice, and keep the relevant troop-contributing country informed of the progress.
The development will bring relief to the population, and will also facilitate the resumption of travel, commerce and other economic activity, including between Mopti city and the town of Bandiagara, some 65 kilometres to the southeast. 
MINUSMA – the French acronym for the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali – was established in April 2013 in the wake of a military coup and the occupation of the north by radical Islamists. 
The head of UN Peacekeeping, Jean-Pierre Lacroix, also tweeted his condemnation for what he called “yet again another cowardly attack against our peacekeepers”

Commitment to serve

Mali continues to be among the most dangerous places to serve as a peacekeeper.   
The Mission supports political processes and carries out numerous tasks related to security and protection of civilians. 
On Wednesday, a MINUSMA logistics convoy in Kidal, northern Mali, came under direct fire from suspected members of a terrorist group for roughly an hour.  
In another post, he wrote that this has been “a hard, very hard week for us.” 
In what is yet again another cowardly attack against our peacekeepers, 2 brave Blue helmets from Egypt lost their lives today while #ServingForPeace with @UN_MINUSMA. These crimes are a blatant violation of international humanitarian law & shall not go unpunished. @EgyptPRNewYork
Meanwhile, peacekeepers have assisted people in two towns in the Kidal and Gao regions, as part of their ongoing support to communities in northern Mali.  
The blue helmets were killed, and another injured, when their Armoured Personnel Carrier hit an improvised explosive device outside the town of Douentza, located in the Mopti region in central Mali.


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