ECOWAS lifts sanctions on Niger, Mali, Burkina Faso

THE Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS)has lifted economic sanctions on Niger, Mali and Burkina-Faso with immediate effect.

The resolution was taken at the extraordinary summit on the peace, political and security situation in the ECOWAS sub-region in Abuja on Saturday, February 24.

Reading the communique after the emergency summit of the West African bloc, ECOWAS Commission President Omar Alieu Touray reeled out some of the sanctions the Authority resolved to lift.

They include the closure of land and air borders between all ECOWAS countries and Niger Republic; no flight zone to all commercial flights to and from the Niger Republic, suspension of all commercial and financial transactions between ECOWAS member states and Niger Republic and freezing of all service transactions including utility services.

Other sanctions on Niger lifted are the freezing of assets of Niger Republic in all ECOWAS Central banks; freezing of assets of Niger State and the state enterprises and parastatals in commercial banks; suspension of Niger Republic from all financial assistance and transactions with all financial institutions lifted and travel bans on the military officials and their families involved in the coup attempt.

According to Touray, the decision by ECOWAS is based on humanitarian considerations especially as we are in the month of lent and as we prepare for the holy month of Ramadan.

He noted that the authority also resolved to lift the sanctions regarding the recruitment of Malian citizens in statutory and professional positions within ECOWAS as well as lifting financial and economic sanctions on the Republic of Guinea.



    The ECOWAS President added that he has instructed the Commission to invite Burkina Faso, Niger, Mali and Guinea to attend the technical and consultative meetings of ECOWAS as well as all security related meetings.

    ECOWAS directed all its institutions, member states and other regional institutions to implement these decisions.

    The ICIR had highlighted some economic and security challenges that could arise from the exit of Mali, and Niger as the country’s fight against insurgency and dwindling economy.

    The three countries were sanctioned by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) for enforcing a military regime and severing diplomatic ties with France, their colonial masters.

    They officially took a sovereign decision on Sunday, January 28, to pull out their nations from ECOWAS.


    Nurudeen Akewushola is an investigative reporter and fact-checker with The ICIR. He believes courageous in-depth investigative reporting is the key to social justice, accountability and good governance in society. You can reach him via [email protected] and @NurudeenAkewus1 on Twitter.

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