According to a new report published by the United Nations mission in Mali, the security situation in the country continues to worsen, with the number of people killed in Mali increasing in 2022.despite government pledges to stamp out extremist violence.
During the October-December 2022 quarter, 2,001 people were affected by acts of violence, including over 370 kidnappings or disappearances.
Extremist groups are responsible for 56% of recorded violations, with civilian casualties as a result of violence more than doubling in Mali in 2022, according to the crisis mapping organization ACLED.
U.N. officials are urging Mali to investigate the Wagner Group, a Russian mercenary organization, for what they call a “climate of terror and complete impunity” in the group’s activities in the war-torn country.
They are also warning that some countries may withdraw from the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA). The Wagner Group has deployed forces to African nations including Libya, Sudan, Mozambique, Madagascar, and the Central African Republic.
MINUSMA was created by the U.N. in 2013 to help stabilize Mali, but the security situation in the country has not improved. The U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has described MINUSMA as a peacekeeping operation where there is “no peace to keep.”
The U.N. drafted a report this year stating that MINUSMA is “not viable” without an increase in peacekeepers and that troops could be withdrawn if key conditions were not met.
Mali’s security problems are affecting most of West Africa, and the African Center for Strategic Studies notes that more than 2.7 million people have been displaced by the escalating violence and insecurity in the Sahel.