The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on Tuesday lifted the sanctions it imposed on Mali after the Aug. 18, 2020 military coup.
The regional bloc, which announced this in a statement by the Chairman of ECOWAS Authority, President Nana Kuffo Addo of Ghana, cited Mali’s “notable advances towards constitutional normalisation” as the rationale behind the lifting of the sanctions.
The lifting of the sanctions comes two days after the new government of Mali named veteran politician Moctar Ouane, a civilian and former foreign minister, as prime minister.
ECOWAS had made it clear they would only consider lifting sanctions if a civilian was given the post of prime minister.
The bloc also on Tuesday called on the interim government to release all military and civilian officials arrested during the Aug. 18 coup that ousted former President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and his government.
ECOWAS further requested the dissolution of the military junta, the self-titled National Committee for the People’s Salvation (CNSP), which led the coup, according to the statement.
Mali’s interim government is headed by transitional President, Bah N’Daw, who served as defence minister from 2014 to 2015 and held several other military positions, with the junta’s leader, Assimi Goita, as vice-president.
The transitional government is expected to hold elections within 18 months.