Algeria's ambassador returns to Mali after diplomatic row
The Algerian ambassador to Mali has returned to Bamako, more than two weeks after being recalled by Algiers in connection with rising diplomatic tensions between the two neighbouring countries, official sources said Saturday.
The Malian ambassador in Algiers - who had been recalled to his country as a reciprocal measure - is still in Bamako but was due to leave in the next few hours, a Malian diplomatic source told AFP.
The diplomats had been recalled to their respective countries on December 22, two days after the Algerian ambassador in Bamako was summoned by the Malian foreign minister over "unfriendly acts" and "interference" by Algiers in Mali's "internal affairs".
In particular, Mali accused the Algerian diplomat of holding meetings with Tuareg separatists without involving Bamako.
The moves came after Algeria's President Abdelmadjid Tebboune received in Algiers an important Malian religious and political figure, Imam Mahmoud Dicko - one of the few to dare to openly express his disagreements with the Malian junta that has been in power since 2020.
Algeria is the main mediator in efforts to return peace to northern Mali following an agreement signed in 2015 between the Malian government and predominantly Tuareg armed groups.
Fighting between the separatists and Mali government troops broke out again in August after eight years of calm, as both sides scrambled to fill the vacuum left by the withdrawal of United Nations peacekeepers.