Former foreign minister Moctar Ouane has been named as Mali’s interim prime minister, in a move likely to trigger the lifting of sanctions imposed by the West Africa regional bloc following the military coup last month. The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) that is made up of 15 member nations said on Friday it would lift sanctions, that have caused imports to the landlocked country to slump 30%, once a civilian premier is named. This is following the fact that Mali’s borders had been closed to put pressure on the same.
The appointment of Ouane comes two days after retired colonel Bah Ndaw was sworn in as president, and coup-leader Colonel Assimi Goita as vice president. The three will be tasked with overseeing an 18-month transition back to civilian rule President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita was overthrown.
ECOWAS is also seeking that all detainees from the coup be released. Among those detained during the coup were Mali’s president at the time Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and although he was released from time to time, others including former prime minister Boubou Cisse, are still in jail.