A group of soldiers have arrested President Bah N’Daw, Prime Minister Mukhtar Awani, and Defense Minister Suleiman Doukour of Mali’s interim government. The African Union and the Economic Community of West African States, a partnership of 15 countries in West Africa, reported this. The three had been transferred to a military base in the northwest of the capital, Bamako.
A few hours before the arrests, the transitional government, which was formed after a previous military coup, appointed new ministers. Many military officers were assigned ministerial posts, but two officers had just been fired from the government.
In the statement, the African Union and ECOWAS demanded the immediate release of the detained leaders. We condemn this extremely dangerous act that cannot be tolerated. “
International organizations such as the United Nations and the European Union also condemned the arrests last night. In a joint statement signed by the United States and Britain, they demanded “immediate and unconditional freedom” for politicians.
Years of anxiety
It has been troubled in the African country for years. Nine years ago, the army also revolted. This led to a coup and the establishment of a military dictatorship. The neighboring countries collectively condemned the move and imposed heavy penalties on the dictatorship.
The jihadist rebels took advantage of the situation by invading much of Mali. In 2013, France decided to intervene to counter the rise of jihad. The Netherlands was also active in Mali, between 2014 and 2019.
After last year’s military coup, President Ndau and Prime Minister Awani were forced to prepare the country for new elections within a year and a half, after which a civilian government could return to power. They also had to present a new constitution.
The Dutch embassy in Mali warned Monday that Dutch people should not take to the streets in Bamako. “Follow the local news. Stay home if you don’t need to go out,” said a statement distributed by the Foreign Ministry.
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