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RF concerned over situation in Mali threatening Sahara-Sahel region

January 11, 2013, 22:23 UTC+3

The situation in Mali has sharply deteriorated recently

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MOSCOW, January 11 (Itar-Tass) – Moscow is concerned over an aggravating situation in Mali that poses a threat to stability in the Sahara-Sahel region, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Friday.

The situation in Mali has sharply deteriorated recently. Islamist militants who control the northern regions of the country have massively attacked the governmental forces shelling them out of the town of Konna, near the town of Mopti.

“On Thursday, Malian Acting President Dioncounda Traore issued a letter to the UN Secretary General, called for support from the international community and announcing that he had appealed for military aid from France, which will hopefully eliminate the terrorist threat,” the ministry said. “According to the information available right now, a compact group of French military advisers arrived at Mali’s air base in Sevare on Thursday to estimate the current tactical situation, in particular having in mind resumption of the French-Malian military cooperation.”

“On Thursday, the UN Security Council answered a French initiative and urgently held consultations on destabilization of the situation in Mali,” the ministry said. “The UN Security Council members unanimously expressed their deep concern over the current developments, condemned resolutely the sorties committed by terrorist and extremist groupings, and stressed the necessity to implement in full the UN Security Council resolutions on Mali, in particular resolution 2085.”

“Moscow is troubled by the serious deterioration of the situation in Mali, which poses direct threat to the territorial integrity of the country, stability in the Sahara-Sahel region as well as, according to the UN Security Council, to global peace and security,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

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