On the sidelines of a dinner held at the Elysee Palace on the occasion of the closing of the “Africa 2020” season, Macron told RFI: “I was shocked. These statements are unacceptable (…) at a time when yesterday a national tribute was held for Maxime Blasco. (French soldier who was killed in Mali on September 24), this is unacceptable. It is shameful.”
“I realize that Malians do not think like that,” Macron added, stressing that the “legitimacy of the current government” emanating from two coups that the country has witnessed since 2020 is “democratically invalid.”
“We are required because we are committed and we want to fight terrorism and enhance security, we are there because the state of Mali asked us to do so. Without France, Mali will be in the hands of terrorists,” the French president added.
Over the past few days, Paris has always strongly condemned what was said by the Malian Prime Minister in his speech to the United Nations General Assembly on Saturday, in which he said that Macron’s announcement in June to reorganize the French military presence in Mali is “a kind of abandonment (of Mali) in middle of the road”.