Mali’s government on Monday gave the French ambassador 72 hours to leave the country over “outrageous” comments by the French authorities about its transitional government, it said in a statement read on national television.
French foreign minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said on Friday that Mali’s ruling junta was “out of control” amid escalating tensions between the West African state and its European partners over military cooperation and elections.
He also called the junta illegitimate. French defence minister Florence Parly said on Saturday French troops would not stay in Mali if the price were too high.
“The French ambassador to Bamako was summoned and notified of a decision by the government inviting him to leave the national territory within 72 hours following hostile and outrageous comments by the French foreign affairs minister recently,” the government statement said.