Estonia aligns itself with the statement by the European Union.
We would like to thank the Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in Mali for his report and the presentation today.
Estonia welcomes the progress achieved in the implementation of the Agreement on Peace and Reconciliation in Mali but call for a further inclusion of women in the peace process. Most notably, we are concerned that there are no women represented in the CSA.
On the positive side, we commend Mali for its efforts to improve the representation of women in the parliamentary elections through the 30% provision in the candidate list. These efforts have already payed dividends, since as of May 1st 2020, the representation of women in the parliament of Mali is 27%, the highest ever on record.
However, Estonia is concerned by the impact of armed clashes and improvised explosive devices on the civilian population and on humanitarian workers. We see this as a vicious circle. On the one hand, civilians are most vulnerable in areas where security authorities are absent. On the other, as the report shows, civilians are sometimes the unintended targets of attacks by armed groups aimed at the security forces. We stress that arming civilians is not the answer to these attacks, as they are not the substitute for well-trained security forces.
Mr. Tine, could you please elaborate more on how could the coordination between various national and international actors on the ground be improved in order to ensure better protection of civilians?