News24

W African leaders to hold Mali summit

2012-07-03 07:45

Ouagadougou - West African leaders will hold a special summit this weekend to discuss the crisis in Mali, meeting in Burkina Faso's capital Ouagadougou, mediators announced on Monday.

The leaders will meet on Saturday with senior Malian political figures and other key figures to discuss moving toward a national unity government, Burkinabe Foreign Minister Djibrill Bassole said.

"The heads of state will have the chance to talk with representatives of the Malian political class and of civil society," Bassole said.

"We have to look at going towards a government of broad consensus, a government of national unity which will be able to better manage the challenges Mali faces," he added.

The contact group countries on Mali would attend the meeting, said Bassole, who has been leading mediation efforts on behalf of the Economic Community of West African States (Ecowas).

The contact group countries comprise Burkina Faso, Benin, Liberia, Niger, Nigeria, Togo and Ivory Coast's president Alassane Ouattara in his capacity as the current chairperson of Ecowas.

Bassole was speaking after talks with Burkinabe President Blaise Compaore and France's special representative for the Sahel region, Jean Felix-Paganon.