A map of Mali is seen at the French military base camp at
Timbuktu's airport. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
France wants the African-led military mission in Mali to
be replaced with a United Nations peacekeeping mandate by
April, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius says.
"From the moment that security is assured, we can envisage
without changing the structures that it can be placed under
the framework of U.N. peacekeeping operations," Fabius told
Asked if the aim was to have this done by April, he said:
"Yes. Our experts and those we are working with are aiming
According to diplomats at the United Nations, the Security
Council is looking at adopting a resolution at the end of
February or early March to replace the current African
mission under the United Nations.
It would then take 45-60 days to "rehat" them as U.N. forces,
which would involve a reduction of their number, the
"On the one hand its an advantage because it's under the
United Nations and the financing of the United Nations, but
that doesn't mean that there is a modification of the
organisation, but just that it will be under the umbrella of
the U.N," Fabius said.