After a comment by the French ambassador describing Mali’s transitional government as “hostile and outrageous,” Mali demanded the French embassy to leave the country within 72 hours.
“The French ambassador to Bamako was summoned and notified of a decision by the government inviting him to leave the national territory within 72 hours following hostile and outrageous comments by the French foreign affairs minister recently,”The government statement said
According to French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian on Friday, he stated that Mali’s junta is “out of control,”, amid rising tensions between the West African country and its European partners following two coups.
He also referred to the junta as an illegal government. On Saturday, French Defense Minister Florence Parly stated that if the price was too great, French forces would leave Mali.
Mali’s relationship with its former coloniser deteriorated last month when the junta reneged on a promise to hold elections and has proposed to stay in power until 2025
Since 2013, when France intervened to push back Islamist terrorists marching on the city, Mali has had French forces on the ground. Since then, the Islamists have regrouped and are fighting a violent insurgency across the Sahel region.