Mali: High Level Consultation On the Mediation of Women Leaders of Mali On Ending the Socio-Political Crisis

press release

At the request of the women of the Republic of Mali, who have expressed the desire to be supported in their initiatives to end the crisis facing the country, a virtual high-level consultation was convened, bringing together fifty nine (59) women leaders from Mali representing different socio-political backgrounds, and the representatives of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the African Union Commission and the United Nations, with the participation of Her Excellency Mrs. Ellen JOHNSON SIRLEAF, Former President of the Republic of Liberia, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and Patron of the African Women Leaders Network (AWLN), Her Excellency Mrs. Amina J. MOHAMMED, Deputy Secretary General of the United Nations and Her Excellency Ambassador Minata SAMATE CESSOUMA, African Union Commissioner for Political Affairs.

The meeting also saw the participation of Dr. Phumzile MLAMBO-NGCUKA, Under-Secretary General of the United Nations and Executive Director of UN Women; Madame Bineta DIOP, Special Envoy of the President of the African Union Commission for Women, Peace and Security; Madame Finda KOROMA, Vice-President of the ECOWAS Commission; Madame Mbaranga GASARABWE, Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary General of the United Nations in Mali and Resident Coordinator of the United Nations System in Mali; Madame Ahunna EZIAKONWA, UNDP Assistant Administrator and Director of Regional Bureau for Africa; Ms. Oulimata SARR, UN Women Regional Director for West and Central Africa; Ms. Awa NDIAYE SECK, Special Representative of UN Women Executive Director for AWLN and UN Women Representative in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC); as well as other women leaders from the continent.

The High-Level Consultation was facilitated by the Office of the Special Envoy of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission on Women, Peace and Security; UN Women, as AWLN global co-conveners. It focused on enhancing the role and effective participation of women in overcoming the crisis, building social cohesion and the strengthening of the Malian state for sustainable peace and development.

Welcoming the initiatives and acknowledging the work already accomplished by the women of Mali with the support of UN Women Mali, the African women leaders expressed their commitment to support Malian women through solidarity missions as they have done in similar circumstances, such as in the Great Lakes region, the Lake Chad Basin, the Sahel and the Mano River;

Taking note of major issues raised by the women of Mali as emerging from the interventions presented by Mama Koité DUOMBIA, Chairperson of the platform of women leaders of Mali; Cissé Aissata SISSOKO, Acting Coordinator of AWLN Mali; Nana Sissako TRAORE, Vice Chairperson of the platform of women leaders of Mali; Ms. Diallo Deidia KATTRA; Ms. Oulematou Sow DEMBELE; and Barrister Soyata MAIGA , former Chairperson of the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights, including : the need for the effective participation of women for an immediate exit from the crisis and the search for a long-term solution; the major challenges they face in their different roles, including the political, security, socio-economic and health crisis; the sanctions that affect the population, the ongoing negotiations and the necessity to take into account the specific needs of women and girls and to involve them fully in the search for short, medium and long term solutions;

Welcoming the Common Roadmap detailing the areas of support requested to strengthen the efforts of the women of Mali in their search for peace and stability in their country.

Appreciating the pledges of support from various structures at regional, continental and global levels, in particular the research and training centers mobilized by the Facilitation, including ACCORD, Africa Leadership Center, Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS), Kofi Annan Center, Partners and women leaders from other regions of Africa, to support and amplify the initiatives of women in Mali.

Recalling the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325, for which Mali already has a National Action Plan, urging States to ensure greater representation of women in decision-making in national, regional and international institutions and mechanisms for prevention, the management and settlement of disputes;

Recognizing and appreciating the efforts of ECOWAS which, in accordance with the principles of subsidiarity, plays a leading role in the multidimensional crisis that Mali is going through;

Appreciating the other partners who are mobilizing to support the women of Mali;

Acting within the Joint African Union-United Nations Framework for Enhanced Partnership in Peace and Security and the Joint Framework for Implementation of Africa's Agenda 2063 and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development;

The High-Level Consultation:

1. Congratulates the Women of Mali for their leadership and their continued engagement in the efforts to find a lasting solution to the crisis in Mali; in this regard, welcomes the initiatives already undertaken, and calls on all the women of Mali to work together for greater cohesion and synergy of actions;

2. Calls on all Malian stakeholders to preserve the supreme interest of their country above all, other considerations and further calls on them to include women and take their priorities into account in negotiations to end the immediate crisis and find long-term solutions;

3. Also calls for the inclusion of young people, including young men and women in the efforts led by women towards sustainable peace and stability;

4. Calls for the strengthening of mechanisms for the protection of women's rights, in particular against gender-based violence and for humanitarian support for women and girls victims of the crisis;

5. Expresses its solidarity with the women of Mali and offers their support, which will revolve around continuous mobilization and advocacy, so that their voices are heard and their concerns taken into account by national bodies, regional and international bodies, in particular through effective participation of women in political transition and governance;

6. Commits to:

- Mobilize both technical and financial resources, particularly for capacity building, social cohesion and synergy;

- Mobilize further resources to enable women to pursue their peace efforts in compliance with COVID-19 protection measures;

- Continue standing in solidarity with the Sisters of Mali, and to conduct a field mission as soon as circumstances allow;

- Remain seized of the issue and to support the women of Mali at every stage of their fight for a new Mali.

Bamako, 26 August 2020

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