W. Africa plots expanded military force in north Mali

PHOTO | PIUS UTOMI EKPEI Malian Minister of Foreign Affairs Tieman Coulibaly looks on during the opening session of ECOWAS Mediation and Security Council in Abuja on November 9, 2012.

What you need to know:

  • The proposal discussed by foreign and defence ministers from the 15-nation Economic Community of West African States could see the bloc commit 3,200 troops and other countries a further 2,300, said a source familiar with the talks
  • Attempts at dialogue are ongoing to resolve the Mali crisis, which analysts have warned poses potential problems to other countries in West Africa at risk of violence from Islamist extremists
  • On Thursday, UN special envoy for the Sahel Romano Prodi, the former Italian prime minister and ex-president of the European Commission, said every effort would be made to avoid military intervention



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