But once the situation is more stable, France wants African troops to do most of the work to wrest the north of Mali from the Islamists, as called for under a United Nations Security Council resolution passed in December.

French officials conceded, however, that there were disputes over how African participation would be paid for and about the best way to transport troops to Mali. In Paris, French officials said that the United States, while willing to help ferry African troops, wanted to bill France for the use of transport aircraft, which officials said would not go down well with the French.

But the officials said that France and the United States were sharing intelligence about Mali and the Sahel region garnered from drones and other means, and discussions with Washington continued amicably.

The African troops also need equipment and training, and Mr. Fabius pointed to a donors’ summit meeting in Ethiopia scheduled for Jan. 29 as “a key moment.”