Mali resumes trial of Ivory Coast troopers as deadline looms

Bamako, Mali The trial resumed in Mali on Friday of 46 Ivorian troops whose detention has sparked a diplomatic row between the 2 international locations, a judicial supply stated.

Their trial started within the capital Bamako on Thursday forward of a January 1 deadline set by West African leaders for Mali to launch the troopers or face sanctions.

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“The two minibuses with the 46 Ivorian soldiers have arrived at the Bamako Court of Appeal. The hearing has resumed,” the supply stated.

Forty-nine troops from Côte d’Ivoire had been arrested after they arrived at Bamako airport on 10 July. Three, all girls, had been later launched.

Those that remained, branded by Mali’s junta as “mercenaries”, had been accused the next month of making an attempt to undermine state safety.

Ivory Coast and the UN say the troops had been flown in to supply routine backup safety for the German contingent of the UN peacekeeping mission in Mali.
An Ivorian delegation traveled to Mali final week for talks on the disaster, and the Ivorian protection ministry stated it was “close to being resolved”.

Thursday’s listening to was held behind closed doorways and below heavy safety, an AFP journalist stated.

On December 4, the Financial Neighborhood of West African States (ECOWAS) set New 12 months’s Day as a deadline for the troopers’ launch, failing which the bloc would impose new sanctions on Mali.

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