UN votes to make tackling central Mali violence a priority

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The Security Council has voted unanimously to beef up the mandate of the more than 16,000-strong U.N. peacekeeping mission in Mali to help tackle escalating violence and re-establish government authority in the central region of the troubled West African nation.

The resolution adopted Friday said the primary mission of the U.N. force remains to support implementation of a 2015 peace deal. It expressed “a significant sense of impatience with parties over the persistent delays in the full implementation of key provisions of the agreement.”

The resolution for the first time added a “second strategic priority” for the mission: to facilitate implementation of “a comprehensive politically led Malian strategy to protect civilians, reduce intercommunal violence, and re-establish state authority, state presence and basic social services in central Mali.”

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