The military junta has just given the Malian army new armoured vehicles of Russian and Chinese origin. But by having many different suppliers, the army is actually running the risk of becoming less effective in its operations against armed groups.
The house arrest of former president Bah N'Daw and his prime minister Moctar Ouane continues to rankle in west African capitals. Some ECOWAS figures are also concerned that the presidential elections planned for next February might be postponed.
Following President Macron's announcement on 10 June of France's plans to end Operation Barkhane, the French presidency is trying to mobilise its partners regarding the situation in the Sahel. French diplomats have begun a major operation to persuade the European Union, the UN and the African Union to get more involved in the region, with a Sahel Coalition summit coming up in July and France due to take the chair of the UN Security Council on 1 July.
New interim president Colonel Assimi Goita has dismissed his predecessor Ban N'Daw's key collaborators. He is also preparing a number of "adjustments" in the security services and putting the finishing touches to the team which will be joining him at the Koulouba Palace.
Germany is stepping up its contribution to the fight against violent extremism in the Sahel by equipping the Malian army with some 30 Puma M36 armoured vehicles acquired from South Africa's OTT Technologies. This €15m endowment is part of a plan to strengthen the armed forces put in place by the National Transitional Council.
The leader of the August 18 putsch that overthrew Ibrahim Boubakar Keita, Col. Assimi Goita, who is now vice-president of the transition prefers to keep well out of the public eye and relies on a group of hand-picked, mostly military, advisors.