France wants UN Security Council push on Mali

April 3, 2012 17:15

PARIS - France is pushing for the UN Security Council to issue a statement on Mali later on Tuesday to show its support of the 15-state West African bloc ECOWAS's efforts to find a solution to the escalating crisis.

Speaking to reporters, French Foreign Ministry spokesman Bernard Valero said Paris had put forward several topics of discussion that it wanted the Security Council to back.

For long one of the most stable democracies in West Africa, Mali has plunged into turmoil since a widely condemned March 22 coup that emboldened Tuareg rebels to seize half the country in their quest for a northern homeland.

They have been joined by Islamists bent on imposing sharia, Islamic law, across the whole of the moderate Muslim state, making it the latest security headache for a region battling al-Qaida agents and home-grown militant groups such as Nigeria's Boko Haram.

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