President of Mali resigns and dissolves parliament

Malian President And Prime Minister Seized In Apparent Mutiny
There has been anger among troops in Mali about pay and over a continuing conflict with jihadists. Source: Getty Images
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Daily US Times: State TV of Mali reports that President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta has resigned, after being detained by soldiers on Tuesday.

Mr Keïta said in a television address that he was also dissolving the government and parliament.

He said: “I want no blood to be spilled to keep me in power.”

The announcement comes hours after Mr Keïta and Prime Minister Boubou Cissé were taken to a military camp near the capital Bamako, drawing condemnation from regional powers and France.

Mr Keïta said: “If today, certain elements of our armed forces want this to end through their intervention, do I really have a choice?”

“I hold no hatred towards anyone, my love of my country does not allow me to,” he added. “May God save us.”

The mutinying soldiers took control of the Kati camp earlier.

There has been anger among soldiers about pay and over a continuing conflict with jihadists – as well as widespread discontent with the former president.

Mr Keïta won a second term in elections in 2018, but there has been anger over the mismanagement of the economy, corruption and the rise of communal violence in areas of the country.

Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta won a second term in 2018. Source: Reuters

Several large protests have been displayed in recent months. Mahmoud Dicko, a conservative Imam who lead the new opposition, has called for reforms after rejecting concessions from Mr Keïta, including the formation of a unity government.

What do we know about the mutiny?

According to the BBC, it was led by Col Malick Diaw – deputy head of the Kati camp – and another commander, Gen Sadio Camara.

After taking over the camp, the mutineers marched on the capital, where they were cheered by crowds who had gathered to demand Mr Keïta’s resignation.

They stormed his residence and arrested the president and his prime minister on Tuesday afternoon. Both of them were there at that time.

The president’s son, the foreign and finance ministers and the speaker of the National Assembly were reported to be among the other officials detained.

The number of soldiers taking part in the mutiny is unclear.

Kati camp was also the focus of a mutiny in 2012 by soldiers angry at the inability of the senior commanders to stop jihadists and Tuareg rebels taking control of northern Mali.

When news first broke of the mutiny, both the African Union and the he United Nations called for the release of those held by the soldiers.

The Economic Community of West African States (Ecowas), a regional body, also said its 15 member states had agreed to close their borders with Mali, eject Mali from all of Ecowas’ decision-making bodies and suspend all financial flows to the country.

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