Mali adopted its most recent National Action Plan (NAP) in 2019 for the period 2019-2023. The NAP’s theory of change (pgs. 22-23) centers women’s participation in peacebuilding, reconciliation processes, and in post-conflict governance and identifies concrete outcomes and associated actions.Mali’s third NAP builds on lessons learned from the previous plan, consultations at all levels, and research on Women, Peace and Security agenda implementation. It has a number of key changes from the previous plan (pgs. 20-21), which include: Updated contextual analysis; Alignment with international, regional, and national instruments; Two results frameworks (a strategic framework and an operational plan); Longer duration; Ownership and broad leadership; Improved coordination, monitoring, and budgetary mechanism; and Localization.

The 2019-2023 NAP includes emerging issues including radicalization and violent extremism; displacement; the role of men in advancing gender equality, and climate change. The NAP contains a situational analysis of the previous NAPs, and reports on progress from the 2015-2017 NAP in order to provide context for the new plan. The NAP includes an operational plan, and notes that details are subject to change; the NAP will be updated yearly and as required (pg. 6). There is a national budget for implementation, which is supplemented by another fund to finance stakeholder implementation. 

Mali’s third NAP is preceded by two other NAPs, adopted in 2012 and 2015 and implemented for the period 2012-2014 and 2015-2017, respectively.

Mali reported on the implementation of its NAP, as well as WPS commitments, in its national reporting for Beijing+25 and in preparation for CSW64 (2020). Specifically, Mali indicated that the priorities of the third NAP include: the prevention of conflicts and gender-based violence, protection and rehabilitation of victims, participation and representation of women in decision-making bodies, promotion of gender and women’s empowerment, and coordination, monitoring, and evaluation (p. 35). Additionally, Mali reported that there is low representation of women in the monitoring of the peace, security and reconciliation process. The average representation of women in the implementation mechanisms of the peace agreement is around 3% (p. 33).

Mali gained independence from France in 1960, after decades of colonial rule by the French Empire. Mali has experienced ongoing political instability since its independence, with multiple military coups in 1968, 1991, 2012, and 2020, including extended rule by a military junta from 1969 until 1979. Furthermore, Mali experienced two armed conflicts with Burkina Faso, resulting from a recurring border dispute in 1974-1975 and 1985. Most recently, in 2012, Mali experienced conflict with Islamic and Tuareg insurgent groups, leading to instability in the northern parts of the country. A UN peacekeeping mission, MINUSMA, has been active in Mali since 2013. 

At the multilateral level, Mali most recently served as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council for the period 2001-2002.  

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National Action Plan (2019-2023)


National Action Plan (2019-2023)




Global Gender Gap Index 2020

139 out of 153

Arms Trade Treaty Ratified


Military expenditure (2019)

$474 million USD

Explore Mali's National Action Plan

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  • Disarmament


The NAP development process was led by the Ministry for the Advancement of Women, Children, and Families (MPFEF) and various stakeholders from public and community institutions, civil society, media, and other partners were involved (pg. 6).

NAP Implementation and Monitoring and Evaluation

The National Monitoring Committee for NAP 1325 is the party that is primarily responsible for the implementation of the NAP (pg. 6) under the direction of the Ministry for the Advancement of Women, Children, and Families (MPFEF). This committee is part of a broader coordination and monitoring mechanism (pg. 24) that also includes the Support Steering Committee and the Technical Management Unit. Implementation will also include representatives from 15 ministries, the National Assembly, government programs, CSOs, the UN, technical and financial partners, and the implementation mechanisms of the Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation. The list of members of the National Monitoring Committee is available on pg. 25. It will meet every quarter to discuss results and progress on the NAP. The Support Steering Committee is responsible for resource mobilization (pg. 24), and the Technical Management Unit is responsible for coordination, communication, monitoring and evaluation, and management of dedicated resources.

The NAP states that consultations with civil society were organized as part of NAP development, and that a Community of Practice will be maintained for the purpose of learning and implementation. There is a NAP indicator for civil society’s level of participation in the process.

The timeframe for NAP implementation is 2019-2023.

The overall goal of the NAP is to incorporate gender into legislative, institutional, and structural reforms, focusing on women’s participation in peacebuilding and reconciliation processes and in post-conflict governance (pg. 7). 

There are four main priorities in the NAP:

  • Participation: Women are fairly and actively involved in peacebuilding and reconciliation processes, and hold decision-making positions at all levels of governance.
  • Prevention: Sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) arising during conflicts are prevented and women make a significant contribution to conflict prevention and other threats to human security.
  • Protection: The fundamental rights of women and girls throughout all phases of conflicts and in times of peace are respected, protected and promoted, and their human security is ensured.
  • Relief and Recovery: Women and girls are agents of change. Their specific needs and strategic interests are taken into account and their human security is ensured in crisis and reconstruction situations.

The NAP is aligned with national and international policy frameworks. On the national level, it is aligned with the Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation in Mali, as well as policies including those on combating SALW proliferation, gender, GBV, and sustainable development. Internationally and regionally, it aligns with AU, ECOWAS, and G5 Sahel commitments, and the SDGs.

Under the strategic framework, there are a number of results and associated indicators under each of the priority areas of the NAP. 

Under the priority of participation, result 1.2 of the NAP states that “Women are involved in mediation; negotiation; conflict management; forums for peace, security and social cohesion; in communities; and at the national, sub regional and international level.” Another result under prevention is 2.1 “All forms of conflict-related sexual and gender-based violence against women and girls are better prevented”. 

There are also sub-activities, labeled opportunities, associated with each activity. For example, under result 2.3, there are sub-activities 2.3.1 “The implementation of the National Policy for preventing and combating violent extremism and terrorism takes gender into account” and 2.3.2 “The social, cultural, political, religious and economic causes for violent extremism and terrorism are identified and analyzed through the lens of gender.”

There are a number of indicators associated with the results framework. For example: Under the result  2.1 “All forms of conflict-related sexual and gender-based violence against women and girls are better prevented”, indicators include “Changing the attitudes of girls, boys, women, and men in the face of SGBV” and sub-indicators under more specific results include “Number of men and boys engage in the fight to end all forms of conflict-related sexual and gender-based violence”.

NAP indicators are aligned with other global and national indicators, including those for the SDGs and for 1325 implementation.

There is a monitoring and evaluation framework detailed in the NAP (pg. 26) which includes details on the monitoring mechanism and knowledge management. The monitoring mechanism will meet quarterly, and there will be annual reporting on the NAP. Based on results and the context in Mali, there will be recommendations and changes made to the NAP.

The NAP provides detail on the progress made towards the previous NAPs, including the statistic that 50% of actions from the 2015-2017 NAP were successfully completed, as well as additional actions not included in the draft. It also provides good detail on the challenges faced in implementation, including ownership, emerging issues, and top-down decentralization of commitments.

Details about the NAP budget are provided (pg. 28); specifically, there is a dedicated budget for implementation and a mutual fund to finance other stakeholders’ implementation. This fund is co-managed by the MPLEL and UN Women. Some of the financing is provided by the government of Mali and other financing is from international donors. 

The NAP states that two of the frameworks that were taken into account in the development of the NAP were the National strategy for disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration of ex-combatants (DDR) (2018) and the National Action Plan to Combat the Proliferation of Small Arms and Light Weapons in Mali (2014-2018). 

In addition to references to weapons in relation to DDR and in conflict prevention, including with regards to masculinity and gender roles, there are concrete actions on disarmament. Result 3.5 is “The safety of women and girls in the face of trafficking and small arms and light weapons circulation is improved”, with the indicator “Proportion of weapons seized, found or voluntarily returned, the illicit source or use of which has been traced or established by competent authorities, in accordance with international instruments”. Opportunity 3.5.1 is “Legislation related to small arms and light weapons is updated and aligned with international and regional instruments and takes gender into account”, with the indicator “How much the gender perspective is taken into account in legislation relating to small arms and light weapons.

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