US envoy to UN calls for better accounting of Wagner activities in Mali and beyond

A US envoy on Friday gave the Security Council an “honest and transparent” account of the destabilizing role of Russia’s Wagner Group and other private security forces in fragile states like Mali. asked to provide.

The comments by Richard Mills, the US deputy ambassador to the UN, come a day after Washington formally designated the Wagner Group as a transnational criminal organization and imposed sanctions on several entities associated with it. issued.

“Wagner is a criminal organization that commits widespread atrocities and human rights abuses in Mali and elsewhere,” Mills told the Security Council.

Organizations such as the Wagner Group play a destabilizing role where UN field missions operate, he added.

The Wagner Group, a network that provides fighters for jobs founded by Evgeny Prigozhin, an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, has received evidence gathered by the United Nations pointing to its involvement in widespread human rights abuses. active in Mali despite being

Since 2012, Mali has been plagued by rebel groups linked to ISIS and al-Qaeda. Most of the West African country is ruled by countless rebel groups, militias and criminal gangs.

Minusuma — the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali — was deployed in 2013 to strengthen the turbulent Sahel province, where fighting has claimed thousands of lives and displaced hundreds of thousands of people from their homes. .

France, Great Britain and Germany have ended their three-year Minusma deployment in Mali over tensions with transition authorities and the country’s decision to partner with Wagner.

France’s deputy ambassador to the United Nations, Natalie Broadhurst, told members of the Security Council that the Wagner Group’s presence in Mali was “aware of the Russian authorities”.

“Their presence has been equated with regular acts of violence perpetrated against civilians in Mali, as well as with the growing obstacles imposed on Minusma’s work. no,” she said.

Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations, Vasily Nebenzia, has accused the Security Council of leaving the vacuum created by the “hasty withdrawal” of French and European forces from Mali.

Updated: Jan 27, 2023 at 11:01 PM

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *