The Togolese president began his mediation by receiving two Ivorian and Malian delegations in Lomé for the first time, after Togo was appointed as a mediator for the crisis between the two countries. Faure Gnassingbé discusses with the two main characters in connection with the case of 49 Ivorian soldiers who were arrested in Bamako on 10 July.
as reported from Lomé,Peter Sassou Dogbe
The two delegations, the composition of which is not yet known, were received on Thursday 28 July in the morning separately in the presidential palace by Faure Gnassingbé. The meeting took place behind closed doors, away from the gaze of journalists.
On July 19, Bamako had asked Lomé to resolve the crisis between Côte d’Ivoire and Mali, when 49 Ivorian soldiers were arrested barely three weeks ago at the airport in Mali’s capital, because they were considered mercenaries by the country’s authorities. But Abidjan, which had demanded their release, maintained that these soldiers were on an official mission. A crisis has therefore arisen between the two countries.
► Also read: Togo agrees to help Mali settle its dispute with Abidjan
On July 19, Colonel Assimi Goïta, head of the junta in Mali, said he was open to dialogue and willing “to work in accordance with the spirit of brotherhood between Mali and Côte d’Ivoire, for a happy end to this situation, including a. through diplomatic channels, while respecting Mali’s sovereignty”.
At the moment, nothing has filtered out of today’s meeting between the mediator and the Ivorian and Malian delegations.
► Read also: Mali: 49 Ivorian soldiers arrested in Bamako, “mercenaries” according to the authorities