March 2022 Attack in Mali that Killed 200-600 Civilians Points to FAMa and Wagner Group: UN to Release Highly Sensitive Report of Findings
C/O Futures Private Military Company (PMC) Research Note Series
Lisa J. Campbell 16 April 2023
From 27 to 31 March 2022, the Malian Armed Forces (FAMa) and Wagner Group conducted an anti-jihadist operation in central Mali that lasted five days and involved the killing of hundreds of civilians. To date, the UN peacekeeping mission in Mali (MINUSMA) has not been allowed access to the area to conduct an investigation, but has received and documented numerous eyewitness accounts of atrocities during that period. The UN in Geneva is set to release a report of findings in early April 2023. Pressure from Malian government officials, such as issuing threats to expel additional UN personnel from Mali, could prevent the report from being released. If the report does become public, it will likely implicate both FAMa and the Wagner Group for various significant crimes, and will potentially involve the International Criminal Court (ICC). While any international follow-on efforts at accountability may come to naught, the report would, at a minimum, serve to raise awareness by spotlighting FAMa and the Wagner Group’s atrocities and threats to civilians. The report also has importance for potentially countering multiple-level disinformation campaigns that have served to aggrandize the Wagner Group and legitimize FAMa’s operations in Mali.