French Defence Minister Florence Parly has urged governments in the Sahel to uphold human rights during military operations, in a report on the progress of France's regional Operation Barkhane before the French senate's foreign affairs committee.
Parly was positive about the deployment of the European Takouba force, made up of special forces troops from several European countries under French command, as well as the strengthening of the G5 Sahel force of Burkina Faso, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Chad.
Respect for human rights
The French defence minister called on governments of the G5 group to ensure that their troops respect human rights during military operations amid accusations over executions carried out by soldiers.
"Political leaders of the Sahel countries are perfectly aware of what's at stake," Parly told French senators from the foreign affairs committee.
Parly said that international support for operations against jihadist groups in the region could be called into question if rights abuses by G5 Sahel soldiers continue.