29 January 2013

Mali to Hold Elections By July 31

According to Mali's interim President Dioncounda Traore, Mali is aiming to organize elections on July 31, 2013 to see through the transition process which had been interrupted as result of a rebellion by Islamist jihadists.

Traore, said he was determined "to organize as soon as possible or before July 31, 2013, clean elections that are transparent and credible."

Speaking in the Ethiopian capital, he thanked the entire international community for pledging about $455.5 million at a donor conference on Tuesday for military operations against Islamist militants in northern Mali and humanitarian aid.

"I would like to reiterate our commitment to lead the transition in Mali with a single agenda - the recovery of the occupied areas but also, and especially, the return of a normal constitutional situation to Mali," he added.

The organization of elections and liberation of northern Mali are part of the key tasks set for the transitional authorities, put in place following a coup last year.

United Nations leader Ban Ki-moon, speaking at the African Union on Sunday, had called on Malian authorities to adopt an "inclusive political process" that would lead to "the full restoration of constitutional order."

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