Russia: No Chance to Recognize Azawad Independence
|A claim of independence by Tuareg rebels in northern Mali stands no chance of being recognized by the international community, a Russian envoy said Friday.
"There are virtually no chances, this is undoubted, for legitimization of a Tuareg state," Mikhail Margelov, Russian President's special envoy to Africa, told reporters.
He said that Sahelian countries, the Economic Community of West African States and the African Union "do not need it."
"We stand unequivocally for the territorial integrity and restoration of the constitutional order in Mali," Margelov said.
Earlier Friday, the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (MNLA) put "Declaration of Independence of Azawad" on its website, proclaiming an "irreversible Independent State of Azawad on Friday, April 6, 2012."
Meanwhile, the MNLA said it was halting all military operations from midnight Thursday as a result of their successful conquest of the Azawad.
The Tuareg rebels are now in control of three northern towns -- Timbuktu, Kidal and Gao -- after President Amadou Toumani Toure was toppled in a military coup last month for his failure to provide means for the military to curb the rebellion in the north.
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