Mali’s Foreign Minister Tieman Hubert Coulibaly called the resolution ‘‘a historic step,’’ adding that his government ‘‘commits itself fully’’ to fulfilling its obligations under the resolution.
Yossoufou Bamba, speaking on behalf of ECOWAS, said the resolution ‘‘meets the expectations of all the African continent’’ and responds to the danger posed by the increasing presence of terrorist groups in the north. The African Union’s U.N. envoy Tete Antonio called the adoption ‘‘a major step forward.’’
The final draft was a compromise between France which was pressing for authorization and the United States, which questioned the readiness of troops from Mali and ECOWAS to fight in the desert. It wanted the mission to be authorized initially to train the Malian army and police and then to help recover the north.
The resolution stresses the importance of reconciliation, urging the transitional authorities to finalize a transitional roadmap to restore constitutional order, including holding elections by April ‘‘or as soon as technically possible.’’
The council asked the secretary-general to provide support in critical areas to help the Malian government extend its authority during or following a military operation, including in the rule of law, removing land mines and promoting national dialogue and regional cooperation.
The Security Council expressed its readiness to consider ‘‘appropriate measures,’’ which could include sanctions, against those whose actions undermine peace, stability and security, ‘‘including those who prevent the implementation of the constitutional order in Mali.’’ It also reiterated its readiness to impose additional targeted sanctions against rebel groups and individuals that don’t cut ties to al-Qaida and its affiliates, including al-Qaida in Islamic Maghreb and the Movement of Unity and Jihad in Western Africa.
As for funding, the resolution asks the secretary-general to set up a trust fund to support the operation and calls on member states and international organizations to provide financial support to enable its deployment. The council also expressed its intention to consider providing ‘‘a voluntary and a United Nations-funded logistics support packages to AFISMA, including equipment and services for an initial period of one year.’’
Associated Press writers Baba Ahmed in Bamako, Mali and Rukmini Callimachi in Dakar, Senegal contributed to this report.