“German soldiers must end their commitment to the UN peacekeepers operation Minusma by the end of 2023 at the latest”said this source on condition of anonymity.
This decision is the subject of an agreement in principle within the German government and an official announcement should take place next Tuesday, according to the same source.
Several countries have undertaken to reconsider their participation in Minusma due to the rise in instability. Westerners denounce in particular the presence of mercenaries from the Russian group Wagner, who came to Mali at the call of the junta which rules the country.
1,100 Bundeswehr soldiers participate in Minusma
About 1,100 Bundeswehr soldiers participate in Minusma, launched in 2013 and aimed at strengthening security in this West African country plagued by jihadist attacks.
The mandate of German troops in Mali runs until the end of May 2023. During its extension decided by parliament in the spring, the deputies for the first time included a withdrawal clause in the event that the security of Bundeswehr soldiers does not would be more guaranteed.
The city of Gao, in eastern Mali, is home to the main camp of the German army. The German forces participate in particular in the protection of the airport.
Bundeswehr reconnaissance flights to ensure the security of their patrols have experienced several interruptions in recent months due to tensions with the Malian government, or administrative problems.
The German government had indicated in mid-August that it had information that Russians were present at Gao airport.
Britain and the Ivory Coast announced this week the forthcoming withdrawal of their contingents in Mali.
France, the main power intervening militarily in Mali, in particular via the soldiers of the Barkhane force, had decided in February to withdraw its troops. The last French soldiers left Mali this summer, after nearly a decade of intervention.