• World - Africa
  • Updated: February 24, 2024

ECOWAS members converge today, to deliberate lifting Niger, Burkina Faso, Mali sanctions

ECOWAS members converge today, to deliberate lifting Niger,

The Economic Community of West African States is expected to suspend all sanctions imposed on Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger, who are currently under military rule after juntas overthrew the civilian governments of all three countries.

This was as President Bola Tinubu, who serves as Chairman of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of States, hosts his counterparts at an extraordinary meeting at the Aso Rock Villa, Abuja, Saturday morning.

Presidential sources noted that with the lifted sanctions, the bloc would attempt to talk the three alienated states out of their decision to withdraw.

Headquartered in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja, the nearly 50-year-old bloc consists of 15 countries.

However, the military-led juntas of Burkina-Faso, Mali and Niger, in late January, announced their withdrawal over “illegal sanctions” harming their people.

They also alleged that the bloc had fallen under the influence of foreign governments whose interests, they said were far from the people.

A presidential source told PUNCH late Friday, “ECOWAS is likely to lift the sanctions against those three states. For the sake of brotherhood, they don’t want them to go.

“That is why recently, former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon (retd.), a founding member, has been intervening. He pleaded that something should be done immediately.”

Another source who spoke under anonymity said, “At tomorrow’s meeting, they are going to lift the sanctions and suspension and ask them to return to the fold. They are our brothers. It is the coup that has put us asunder. If you check what the President said in Addis Ababa, you will get where this is coming from.”

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