Africa African Union suspends Mali’s membership after coup

African Union suspends Mali’s membership after coup

The African Union (AU) on Tuesday suspended Mali’s membership from the bloc in the aftermath of last month’s coup.

The decision was made during a meeting of the AU Peace and Security Council on the situation of its West African member.

The bloc decided “to immediately suspend the Republic of Mali from participating in all activities of the African Union, its organs and institutions, until normal constitutional order is restored in the country,” the Peace and Security Council communique said after the meeting.

It urged “the Malian army to return urgently and unconditionally to the barracks and to refrain from any further interference in the political processes in Mali.”

The bloc warned of sanctions and other punitive measures if the country does not return to the agreed-upon democratic transition.

The AU urged the country to respect the transitional period of 18 months, initially planned until Feb. 27, 2022, the next date of democratic elections.

It called for the immediate lifting of the house arrest of Bah N’Daw, the president of the transitional government overthrown by the coup, and Moctar Ouane, the prime minister.

Both resigned last week after being held for three days by Assimi Goita, the junta leader who masterminded the two previous coups.