Canada stalled on UN request to lead mission
Canada may have missed a chance to provide the commanding officer for the United Nations peacekeeping mission in Mali because it wanted to talk first to the Trump administration, the Canadian Press has learned. The UN put out requests to a handful of top-tier countries in mid-December as the term of the mission’s previous commander, Danish Maj.-Gen. Michael Lollesgaard, was coming to an end. Sources say the Liberal government asked the UN to hold off on a decision until after the government had a chance to consult the new American administration on Canada’s future peacekeeping plans. Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan said last month he wanted to talk to his American counterpart, Defence Secretary James Mattis, before Canada sent peacekeepers to Africa because co-ordination with the United States is essential.