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By Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS)
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ABUJA, Nigeria, March 12, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- A Select Committee of the ECOWAS Chiefs of Defence Staff met in Bamako on Friday 8th March 2013 to consider procedures for the transformation of the African-led International Support Mission in Mali (AFISMA) into a United Nations operation.

The extra-ordinary meeting, which followed the recommendation of the 42nd Ordinary Summit of ECOWAS Heads of State and Government held 27-28 February 2013 in Yamoussoukro, Côte d?Ivoire, was a follow up to the Committee's meeting that reviewed the AFISMA Concept of Operations (CONOPS).

At the end of their one-day deliberation in Bamako, the Select Committee endorsed the Revised CONOPS of AFISMA and recommended its implementation with a view to ensuring a speedy return of peace to Mali.

The Revised CONOPS was submitted for validation and adoption by the Mediation and Security Council and the 42nd extraordinary Summit.

The Select Committee had met in Bamako on 21stFebruary 2013, to endorse the outcome of the 15-20 February joint planning meeting by the African Union (AU), ECOWAS and other stakeholders on the CONOPS.

The review of CONOPS became necessary in view of the current situation in Mali following the French military intervention and the deployment of Chadian troops partnering with the AFISMA forces.