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EU dilemma over Malian armed forces training


brussels bureau

EU dilemma over Malian armed forces training

The EU is on course to revise and accelerate its training program for the Malian army.

200 instructors now look set for deployment over 15 months.

But any intervention via european ground troops has firmly been dismissed by the Commission.

Michael Mann, the EU Commission’s spokesperson reinforced the need for sustained training and development.

“The mission will probably be launched in either the second half of February or early March. The situation on the ground has changed but it remains urgent and it’s still important to train the Malian armed forces because right now the major weaknesses in these forces are still very apparent.”

While the European Union was supposed to form three or four battalions to send to the front line, its projects have been overtaken by the war.

Bérangère Rouppert, a Research Fellow at GRIP, told euronews:

“With the fact that the Malian armed forces have already gone into battle alongside the French army support forces, it poses the question of what troops remain for the European Union to train. They will have to undergo a short-term review of the type of training to put these armed forces through to allow them to become operational as quickly as possible and even able to conduct high-intensity combat.”

EU foreign ministers are set to hold a meeting about Mali’s escalating situation on Thursday.

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