President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, who was detained during the coup in Mali on August 18, has been freed and this was disclosed by the country’s new military rulers on Thursday, 27 August 2020.
Djibrila Maiga, spokesman for the junta, which calls itself the National Committee for the Salvation of the People (CNSP), said while referring to Keita by his initials as many Malians do, “Presdient IBK is free in his movements, he’s at home”.
The release of Keita and other leaders had been a key demand of Mali’s neighbours and international organisations, including the African Union and European Union.
It would be recalled that Keita, prime minister Boubou Cisse and other senior officials were seized by rebel troops led by young officers who staged a mutiny at a base near Bamako and in the early hours of August 19, Keita appeared on national TV to announce his resignation, saying he had had no other choice, and wanted to avoid “bloodshed”.
Former Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan, heading a team from the regional bloc ECOWAS, was given access to Keita last Saturday, and said he seemed “very fine”.