When the U.N. appointed Romano Prodi as its special envoy to Sahel in October last year, the hot, dusty Republic of Mali in south-west Sahara was rarely in the news.
In December, the U.N. Security Council adopted a resolution to send an African-led mission of 3.300 soldiers to Mali to spearhead the fight against rebels.
Prodi said France took on the job due to the scarcity of local resources.
He also said the French action had unanimous U.N. backing, despite its unilateral nature.
Looking back to his experience of E.U. foreign policy in his time as E.U. commission chief, Prodi said the Union’s current accord on what to do about Sahel is unprecedented.
“I can say it’s a miracle that all the 27 member states agree. I never before found such a level of agreement. This is different from Libya. This is different from any other case we had before”, Prodi concluded.