On Thursday, at least 11 people were killed and 53 injured after a bus traveling on the road between Bandiagara and Goundaka in the Mopti area of Mali — a region known as a hotbed for violence by roaming armed groups — hit an explosive device.
For over a decade, the West African country has struggled with an armed conflict between the Malian government and insurgent groups, that has reportedly claimed thousands of lives and displaced hundreds of thousands.
The fallout from the Malian government's hostility towards France and its European partners is becoming increasingly apparent. Now that the shadowy Russian Wagner group is active in the country, the security situation is rapidly deteriorating. Wagner isn't focused on the people's security but rather on the pursuit of its own and Moscow's interests. The West is now well-advised to offer its anti-terror support to countries in West Africa.
The West's moves in resource-rich Mali, and in the entirety of the Sahel, aren't motivated by the fight against jihadist insurgents, to promote democracy, or to secure a "rule-based order." Western members of the UN are only concerned with defending their own geostrategic interests - including against Russia. The so-called stabilization mission MINUSMA serves only as a tool for power projection, after the end of French neo-colonialism in Mali.