All is not well in Mali, as news filtered in of military coup scare, leading to the arrest of the country’s President, Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and Prime Minister Boubou Cisse.
News reaching us at Greenbarge Reporters said that the two leaders are now being detained by mutinying soldiers in the capital.
The development today, August 18, came hours after soldiers took up arms and staged a mutiny at a key base in Kati, a town close to Bamako.
It followed a weeks-long political crisis that has seen opposition protesters taking to the streets to demand the departure of Keita, accusing him of allowing the country’s economy to collapse and mishandling a worsening security situation.
Mali’s years-long conflict, in which ideologically-motivated armed groups have stoked ethnic tensions while jockeying for power, has spilled into the neighbouring countries of Niger and Burkina Faso, destabilising the wider Sahel region and creating a massive humanitarian crisis.
Earlier today, opposition protesters gathered at a square in Bamako in a show of support for the soldiers while regional and international powers urged the troops to return to the barracks and foreign embassies advised their citizens to stay indoors.
UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres condemned the arrest of Mali’s President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, and members of the government, calling for their immediate release.
The UN spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said in a statement said that Guterres called for “the immediate restoration of constitutional order and rule of law in Mali.”
read the statement.
Meanwhile,the United Nations Security Council will hold tomorrow, August 19 afternoon an emergency meeting to discuss the current situation in Mali.
The session was requested by France and Niger and will take place behind closed doors, a senior UN diplomat told AFP news agency on condition of anonymity.
EU condemns the ‘coup attempt’ in Mali
The European Union “strongly condemns the coup attempt underway in Mali and rejects any unconstitutional changes,” the block’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said on Twitter.
“This can in no way be a response to the deep socio-political crisis that has hit Mali for several months.”