Germany’s parliament (Bundestag) has decided to withdraw the German Armed Forces’ (Bundeswehr) participation from the United Nations (UN) Multi-dimensional Integrated Stabilisation Mission (MINUSMA) in Mali.

The phase-out mandate will stagger the redeployment of German forces in Mali by the end of May 2024. 

This withdrawal from Mali will take place in a gradual and structured manner, in close consultation with the UN, starting from 1 June 2023 until 31 May 2024. 

Following this mandate, the German government is now focusing on the protection of deployed German contingent.

During the execution of gradual withdrawal, the Bundeswehr’s CH-53 transport helicopters will be utilised for rescuing injured and wounded people.

The MINUSMA mission is aimed at supporting the Malian government for restoring the state authority in central Mali and implementation of the peace agreement in the north of the country.

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Since its establishment in 2013, the mission is being supported by the German forces, with deployment of around 1,400 German personnel in Mali.

However, the German government has now concluded that this operation cannot be fulfilled further, as the current security situation in Mali continues to deteriorate.

The German authorities highlighted that the security situation in northern and central Mali is getting unstable, causing a concern for the deployed forces.

After evaluating in detail about the ongoing mission, the German government concluded that its Malian counterpart has an “unconstructive behaviour towards MINUSMA” as well as its framework conditions.

The German government has claimed that Malian authorities are restricting Bundeswehr’s freedom of movement and restricting German helicopters and reconnaissance drones’ overflight rights.

One of the main reasons for this decision, as per the German government’s assessment, is the cooperation of Malian forces with Russian troops in the country.