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On Mali, France Says ECOWAS Hasn't Asked for Money, Talks Envoy for Sahel

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, August 10 -- After French Ambassador Gerard Araud read out a UN Security Council press statement on Mali late Friday afternoon, Inner City Press asked him two questions about the country.

First, Inner City Press asked Araud for France's position on what Morocco has proposed, a dedicated envoy for Mali, different from West Africa envoy Said Djinnit who they say is already overworked with issues ranging from piracy in the Gulf of Guinea to the coup d'etat in Guinea Bissau.

Araud replied that it is a French idea, for an envoy to the Sahel. Inner City Press asked if this would be separate from UNOWA and Said Djinnit. Araud replied that the identity of the envoy is not France's concern. But can one person do these disparate jobs, well?

Inner City Press also asked who would PAY for the proposed ECOWAS force to Mali. Earlier on Friday, Araud said that the idea for a neutral force for the Eastern Congo and its border with Rwanda would be too costly.

Araud said that so far, no specific request for funding from ECOWAS has been received. But isn't that what this is all about? Watch this site.

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