FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: In Atlanta, Soyia Ellison, firstname.lastname@example.org In Bamako, Laurence Barros, email@example.com
BAMAKO, MALI — The Carter Center, which is serving as Independent Observer of the implementation of the 2015 Agreement on Peace and Reconciliation in Mali, released its first report today, saying that despite slow progress the signatories remain committed to the agreement.
Covering the period from January through April 2018, the Independent Observer’s report emphasizes that, while the recent return of the Malian army and the Platform to the northern city of Kidal to participate in joint patrols with the Coordination of Azawad Movements is a step forward, other positive developments have been harder to achieve.
Over four months of observation, the Independent Observer found that the parties failed to respect timelines that they themselves established. The government of Mali demonstrated limited consistency in its engagement in the implementation process, while the CMA and the Platform showed passivity and rarely took initiative. The Independent Observer, however, indicates that the situation is improving in this area. The report highlights insufficient communication with the Malian public about the agreement and its implementation process and notes a growing distance between the parties and the general public. The people – whether in the north, center, or south – deplore the absence of peace dividends. A lack of public participation threatens to undermine support for the agreement’s implementation.
Finally, the report notes that the agreement’s monitoring committee at times fails to assume all of its responsibilities under the agreement, including to supervise and coordinate the implementation process.
The Carter Center recommends several steps to advance implementation, including that the parties and international stakeholders focus on decision-making rather than preparatory workshops and consultations; that the parties engage more with the Malian public about the peace process, which will help drive and anchor implementation; and that the monitoring committee make full use of the powers granted to it to assist the parties in implementing the agreement.
This is the first of several periodic reports to the public, which will be issued by the Independent Observer as mandated in the peace agreement. Between today and the next report in August, the Center will continue to be in contact with stakeholders with the objective of supporting the implementation of the agreement and sustainable peace in Mali.
Background: The Carter Center was designated as the Independent Observer in October 2017. According to Article 63 of the 2015 agreement, the Independent Observer’s job is to impartially identify blockages in the implementation process and recommend steps for enhancing implementation. The Center’s role as the Independent Observer was recognized by the United Nations Security Council in Resolution 2391 in December 2017, and assumed its role in January 2018.
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A not-for-profit, nongovernmental organization, The Carter Center has helped to improve life for people in over 80 countries by resolving conflicts; advancing democracy, human rights, and economic opportunity; preventing diseases; and improving mental health care. The Carter Center was founded in 1982 by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, in partnership with Emory University, to advance peace and health worldwide.