U.N. says Benin will terminate contribution to peacekeeping mission in Mali

The government of Benin is preparing to withdraw its troops operating in Mali under the auspices of the UN Mission in Mali (UNMIS). A verbal note from Benin’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs reached the UN Secretariat in New York at the end of April. It requested the withdrawal of two units, an infantry company and a police unit.
The Beninese authorities want to strengthen security on their own territory, particularly in the face of terrorist attacks in the north of the country in recent months. A verbal note from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has therefore been sent to the UN Secretariat in New York. RFI was able to obtain a copy of this note.
The request is formulated in very diplomatic terms: “Benin would be grateful to the UN Secretariat for the arrangements to be made, jointly, for the withdrawal of the Mechanized Infantry Company and the Formed Police Unit.
390 men are involved, including 250, on the Infantry side, based in Sénou, and 140 police officers based in Kidal.
However, the Beninese troops did not leave Mali immediately. The Beninese request is accompanied by a timetable. A rotation of troops is underway. President Patrice Talon is letting it run its course. It will be “the last”, the message says.
The withdrawal of the police unit will be organized no later than November 5, 2022, and that of the infantry company in November 2023.
It is the worrying security situation in northern Benin that justifies this decision, the government says clearly: the request states that it is necessary to deploy all Beninese skills to cope.

About Geraldine Boechat 1986 Articles
Senior Editor for Medafrica Times and former journalist for Swiss National Television. former NGO team leader in Burundi and Somalia