Dr Charles Tannock

Member of the European Parliament for London

Reconstruction and democratisation of Mali

Delivered in Plenary - 13th June 2013

Mr President

I very much welcome this resolution, particularly insofar as it complements my own report on human rights in the Sahel region, which is coming out later this year.

Mali is a country which has suffered the gravest of disasters since the Tuareg rebellion which began last year, and it now needs a coordinated nation-building approach from a foreign affairs, security – particularly following the French military intervention – and human rights perspective in order to rebuild its institutions and establish trust between government and citizens.

In the short term, this will require the atrocities perpetrated by all the belligerent groups, including at times government forces, to be swiftly punished, while the work goes on to safely repatriate or resettle Mali’s hundreds of thousands of refugees and IDPs and secure their towns and villages from any further violence or extrajudicial retribution. None of us should doubt the difficulty of this task, but with a combination of material and political assistance to our partners in Bamako and across the region, we must hope that Mali, once a peaceful country, can once again become prosperous economically, enjoy free and fair elections and become a democratic society for all its communities.