Europe Day commemorates the signing of the 'Schuman Declaration' on 9 May 1950. It was an ambitious plan to ensure long-term peace in post-war Europe and is considered the beginning of what is now the European Union.
EUTM Mali was born in 2013 to develop and reinforce the capabilities of the MaAF (Malian Armed Forces), with the end result of a self-sufficient armed force capable of contributing to the defence of its population and territory. During these ten years, EUTM Mali has been the military pillar of the EU's strategy in the country, celebrating its tenth anniversary in conjunction with Europe Day. The EUTM Mali mission headquarters is celebrating this ceremony with a flag-raising ceremony and a commemoration of the fallen to pay tribute to the soldiers who have lost their lives in the service of the mandate over the past ten years, Portuguese Staff Sergeant Gil Benido and Spanish Corporal Antonio Carrero.
The ceremony was attended by Brigadier General Ousmane Wele, Deputy Chief of Staff of the Army. During the ceremony, Brigadier General Ortiz-Repiso, Head of the EUTM MALI mission, stressed that the mission has worked closely with the Malian authorities and its international partners to reinforce security and stability in the region and has contributed to improving security in the Sahel region, working hand in hand with the G5 Sahel joint force.
He also reiterated that the challenges facing Mali are manifold, that the Malian Armed Forces are now more capable, better equipped and trained to meet current and future security challenges, and that going forward, the EUTM Mali mission is determined to maintain its commitment to Mali and the Sahel region in order to continue to work closely with the Malian authorities. He concluded by saying how proud the European Union was of what had been achieved together over the past ten years and that it was determined to remain committed to Mali and the Sahel region in the years to come.