After Mali, what Commitment from Germany in the Sahel? Notes du Cerfa, No. 169, June 2022
Germany, despite the reluctance of its public opinion, is committed to supporting security in the Sahel, notably through its participation in the European Union Training Mission in Mali (EUTM) and recently in Niger, and in the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA).
The security situation in the central Sahel, despite a significant commitment by the international community, has been deteriorating sharply for a decade. The arrival of the Russian private military company Wagner in Mali led to the suspension of the training component of EUTM, and thus to the German withdrawal. On the other hand, following the announcement of the withdrawal of the French operation Barkhane, Berlin decided to extend its participation in MINUSMA by one year and to increase the number of personnel. This mission is currently Germany's largest security commitment since its pulling out from Afghanistan in the summer of 2021. The security commitment complements Berlin's role in the area, at a time when the French partner is reducing its size and in the context of increasingly fierce strategic competition south of the Sahara. Berlin intends to strengthen its cooperation with civil society and increase its official development assistance.
Alain Antil is the Director of the Sub-Saharan Africa Center at the French Institute of International Relations (Ifri). He works on Mauritanian political issues and on security issues in the Sahel.
Paul Maurice is a Research Fellow at the Study Committee on Franco-German Relations (Cerfa) at the French Institute of International Relations - Ifri, where he specifically works on issues of foreign and security policy of Germany.
This publication is available in French: "Après le Mali, quel engagement de l’Allemagne au Sahel ?" (pdf)