Military Arrests Mali President, Prime Minister And Defence Minister

It has been reported that military officers in Mali detained the President, Prime Minister and Defence Minister of the interim government on Monday,  just few months after a military coup ousted the previous president.

According to reports, President Bah Ndaw, Prime Minister Moctar Ouane and defence minister Souleymane Doucoure were all taken to a military base in Kati outside the capital Bamako, hours after two members of the military lost their positions in a government reshuffle.

It was disclosed that political instability and military infighting have complicated efforts by Western powers and neighbouring countries, to prop up to the impoverished nation, contributing to regional insecurity.

However, the United Nations’ mission in Mali called for the group’s “immediate and unconditional” release and said those who hold the leaders would have to answer for their actions.

Also it was disclosed that delegations from the top regional decision-making body ECOWAS will visit Bamako on Tuesday to help resolve the “attempted coup”, ECOWAS, the U.N., African Union, European Union and several European countries said in a joint statement.

The group reportedly said, “The international community rejects in advance any act imposed by coercion, including forced resignations.”

The U.S. State Department called in a statement for the “unconditional release of those currently being held”.

According to other reports, Ndaw and Ouane had been tasked with overseeing an 18-month transition back to civilian rule after the August takeover, but they appear to have moved against the military’s control over a number of key positions.

According to a former government official, “The sacking of the pillars of the coup was an enormous misjudgement. The actions are probably aimed at getting them back in their jobs.”

One of the  military official in Kati said this was not an arrest. “What they have done is not good,” the source said, referring to the cabinet reshuffle. “We are letting them know, decisions will be made.”

According to history, Kati’s military base is notorious for ending the rule of Malian leaders. Last August, the military took President Keita to Kati and forced him to resign. A mutiny there helped topple his predecessor Amadou Toumani Toure in 2012.

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Esther Ifeoluwa

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