Macron starts to pull French troops out of Mali

France is to start closing its bases in northern Mali before the end of 2021, President Emmanuel Macron has said. Operation Barkhane began in August 2014.

The country, which has been fighting Islamist extremists in the Sahel for eight years, will initially move troops south, before reducing the numbers to around half - amounting to about 2,500 to 3,000 soldiers.

Macron said the decision had been taken "in line with the imperative of containing the spread of the threat to the south".

The French president was keen to point out they would continue to work in the region, even with reduced numbers.

"We will remain committed. But to remain committed is also to adapt," Macron told a news conference on Friday after meeting virtually with leaders from the region.

The move has been supported by Niger's President Mohamed Bazoum.

Follow EU Today on Social media:

EUToday Correspondents

EUToday Correspondents

Our team of independent correspondents, based across Europe and beyond, are at the centre of geopolitical dynamics. We are united by our commitment to free and unbiased journalism, and our devotion to the concept of true and unfettered democracy. We take our job very seriously!

Related posts