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Nations pledge billions to rebuild Mali

BRUSSELS — A plan to turn Mali into a stable democracy rather than a terrorist haven drew massive support Wednesday, as various nations and international organizations pledged $4.22 billion to help reconstruct the conflict-ridden West African nation.

The objective of the donors’ conference in Brussels had been to raise $2.6 billion to support an ambitious $5.6 billion plan drafted by Malian officials aimed at helping what many observers now view as a failed state reemerge as a stable and secure democracy.

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By Wednesday evening, the pledges far exceeded that goal.

‘‘This conference was a total success,’’ Mali’s interim president, Dioncounda Traore, said, as he expressed unreserved thanks to the international community.

A list of the pledges was not immediately released. But President Francois Hollande of France said his country would contribute $363.3 million. Germany committed $129 million to the project, to be paid out through 2014, provided Mali’s planned elections take place.

In Washington, State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell said the Obama administration would ask Congress for $180 million in funding for Mali in 2014, after the elections.

And a British official said the United Kingdom would pledge $195 million to help make Mali and the broader Sahel region more secure, but it was unclear how much of that was specifically for Mali.

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