ECOWAS Lifts Economic, Travel Sanctions On Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger On Humanitarian Ground

3 months ago
1 min read

Barely one month after Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger announced intention to exit from the Economic Economic Community of West Africa States (ECOWAS), the regional group has lifted economic and travel sanctions imposed on them.

ECOWAS had in reaction to the decision of military leaders in the three countries to stage military coups which removed democratically elected presidents, imposed sanctions.

However, with the turn of events, the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government at an extraordinary summit on the political, peace, and security situation in the region held in Abuja on Saturday, decided to suspend the closure of the land and air border to Niger, a no-fly zone of all commercial flights.

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The resolution was announced by President of the ECOWAS Commission, Dr Omar Touray, after hours of deliberations by the leaders who attended the meeting.

Touray added that the Commission has also lifted travel restrictions on members of the military junta and their families.

Additionally, it has unfrozen all financial transactions between Niger and the ECOWAS states, including those involving the central bank of the group and the unfreezing of all Niger assets at EBID.

Touray said the decision was “based on humanitarian considerations due to lent and the approaching month of Ramadan.”

Asode Niger, the ECOWAS also lifted sanctions on Guinea, and Mali and invited the four countries to attend technical consultative meetings of ECOWAS going forward.

Earlier in his opening address, Nigeria’s President, Bola Tinubu, called on the leaders to engage in constructive dialogue as way of finding sustainable solution to political stability in the West African subregion.

Tinubu stressed the for the leaders to embrace unity to resolve the existing political challenges.

He called Niger, Burkina Faso and Mali to in the interest of their people, reconsider their decision to pull out of ECOWAS.

“We must stand united in our resolve to promote economic integration, democracy, and human rights, with a view to fostering sustainable development across all our member states,” Tinubu stated.

“Times like we currently face in our sub region demand that we take difficult but courageous decisions that put the plight of our people at the centre of our deliberations. Democracy is nothing more than the political framework and the path to addressing the basic needs and aspirations of the people. This is why we must re-examine our current approach to the quest for constitutional order in four of our Member States.

“I therefore urge them to re-consider the decision of the three of them to exit their home and not to perceive our organization as the enemy. I am confident that through our collective efforts and determination, we will navigate the challenges before us and chart a course towards a more peaceful, secure, and prosperous West Africa.”

 


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