The military government in Mali has accused French President Emmanuel Macron of a “neo-colonial, paternalistic and condescending” attitude.
The junta asked Mr Macron to stop his criticism of the Malian army and stirring “ethnic hatred”.
It follows Mr Macron’s remarks last week during his tour in West Africa that regional states had the responsibility to ensure Malian people can “express the sovereignty of the people”.
Mr Macron also criticised the deployment of Russian mercenaries in Mali – which Mali denies.
“The transitional government demands that President Macron definitively abandon his neo-colonial, paternalistic and condescending posture to understand that no-one can love Mali more than the Malians,” government spokesman Col Abdoulaye Maïga said on public television.
Bamako also condemned what it called “hateful and defamatory” remarks blaming the Malian army of killing civilians during recent operations.
It criticised Mr Macron for making “erroneous” accusations “despite denials” by the Malian government.
The Malian army and Russian paramilitaries were accused of carrying out a massacre of hundreds of civilians in the central town of Moura in late March, according to Human Rights Watch.
Relations between Paris and Bamako have deteriorated significantly over the past year.
France was pushed out by the junta after nine years’ presence in Mali fighting jihadists.