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Carter Center Launches Effort as Independent Observer of Mali Peace Agreement

Contact: In Atlanta, Soyia Ellison,

(En Francais)

BAMAKO, MALI — The Carter Center today announced that it has chosen former U.S. Ambassador Bisa Williams to spearhead its efforts as the official independent observer of Mali’s 2015 Peace Agreement.

Jean Ntolé Kazadi, a former African Union official from the Democratic Republic of Congo, will serve as Williams’ deputy, the Center said.

Last November, the Peace Agreement Monitoring Committee requested that The Carter Center serve as the independent observer – a position outlined in Article 63 of the peace agreement. In December, the United Nations Security Council welcomed the Center as the independent observer in U.N. Security Council Resolution 2391.

According to Article 63, the observer is responsible for evaluating and reporting on the implementation of the agreement, identifying any hindrances, outlining responsibilities, and formulating recommendations on the steps to be taken to advance implementation. To inform its assessments, the observer will meet regularly with the signatories of the agreement and civil society.

The Carter Center has a long history in Mali, having worked for nearly three decades to assist the government in its efforts to improve health in every corner of the country. The Center also sent a small delegation to the 2002 election, helped promote food security, and worked to improve access to public information.

“Today, Mali faces new and daunting challenges, first and foremost the challenge of peace,” said former U.S. President Jimmy Carter. “The Carter Center was asked to serve as the independent observer of the peace agreement. It is an important responsibility. We approach it with deep humility and an absolute commitment to impartiality.

“We are confident that we can count on the support of the signatories and their firm will to build lasting peace in Mali. If peace is to endure, it will be because of actions undertaken by the people of Mali for the benefit of all citizens. We will do our best to defend peace and stand with the people of Mali in the coming period.”


Bisa Williams, special advisor on Mali: Williams, a former foreign service officer with the U.S. Department of State, served as the United States ambassador to Niger from 2010-2013 and deputy assistant secretary of state for African affairs from 2013 to 2015. Prior to those postings, she was the State Department’s coordinator for Cuban affairs (2007-2010) and acting deputy assistant secretary of state for the Western Hemisphere (2010). She now runs her own strategy and advising firm.

Jean Ntolé Kazadi, deputy special advisor on Mali: Kazadi, former chief of staff and political advisor to the secretary-general of the International Organization of the Francophonie, was most recently head of the political unit and chief advisor for the African Union Mission to Mali and the Sahel.


Le Centre Carter entame ses efforts en tant qu’Observateur indépendant de l’Accord pour la paix du Mali >


"Waging Peace. Fighting Disease. Building Hope."

A not-for-profit, nongovernmental organization, The Carter Center has helped to improve life for people in over 80 countries by resolving conflicts; advancing democracy, human rights, and economic opportunity; preventing diseases; and improving mental health care. The Carter Center was founded in 1982 by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, in partnership with Emory University, to advance peace and health worldwide.