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Ecowas to meet on on Mali, Guinea Bissau

2012-04-20 22:05

Abidjan - The Economic Community of West African States will hold a summit in Abidjan next Thursday on the crises in Mali and Guinea Bissau, the Ivorian presidency of the bloc said on Friday.

"There will be an extraordinary summit of the heads of state on Thursday in Abidjan on Mali and Guinea Bissau," said an aide to Ivorian President Alassane Ouattara, the grouping's current chairperson.

The 15-member Ecowas has been rattled by successive crises in Mali and Guinea Bissau over the past month.

In Mali, a group of renegade soldiers ousted the president in Bamako on March 22, claiming to act against the government's inability to stop a Tuareg rebellion in the north.

Since then however, the Tuaregs and al-Qaeda-affiliated Islamists have conquered the entire northern half of the country.

Amid a barrage of international condemnation, the junta handed power back to civilian authority but the coup leaders have continued to flex its muscles.

Ecowas has also condemned last week's coup in Guinea-Bissau and the junta's subsequent decision to appoint a failed presidential hopoeful to lead a two-year transition to democracy.