In Côte d’Ivoire, about 850 decorated Minusma soldiers in the army general staff
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Among them are the 49 soldiers detained in Mali, later released after months of negotiations between Lomé, Bamako and Abidjan. A ceremony whose objective was, for the Ivorian authorities, to mark recognition of the commitment of these soldiers.
With our correspondent in Abidjan, Bineta Diagne
About 850 soldiers, committed in the last two years in Timbuktu, Mopti, Gao and Bamako, are gathered around the Place d’Armes.
General Lassina Doumbia, chief of the army staff, wishes to motivate his troops: ” I know the difficulties that have been yours, rubbing elbows with danger on a daily basis, fighting against a treacherous and unpredictable enemy. But this presence on Malian soil contributes to defending the front and helping to guarantee the security of our borders. »
After two weeks of retreat in Assinie, for a ” psychological rearmament », the 49 soldiers who had been arrested in Mali, received the medal of the National Order.
On behalf of all the decorated soldiers, Colonel Eustache Kouassi evokes the periods of doubts that the troops went through.
” This stay will have known many adventures, both in duration and in development. In the end, it was anywhere from 6 to 34 months of continuous stress but permanent determination. »
870 Ivorian soldiers are still on mission in Timbuktu and Mopti. They should return to Côte d’Ivoire at the end of August, without being replaced by other Ivorian soldiers.