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Mali’s Coup Leader Dismisses President and Prime Minister

Brittany Jordan

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Malian police gather outside the Bourse du Travail where striking workers gathered to protest the arrest of President Bah N’Daw and Prime Minister Moctar Ouane by military personnel in Bamako, Mali, on May 25, 2021. (AP Photo)

BAMAKO, Mali—Mali’s former coup leader Assimi Goita took control of the country again Tuesday after firing the president and prime minister of the transitional government after they announced a cabinet reshuffle without his permission.

While Goita pledged to go ahead with holding new elections in 2022 as promised, his display of force casts doubt on whether the vote will go ahead without significant interference by the junta that overthrew the last democratically elected president.

Transition Mali President Bah Ndaw
Transition Mali President Bah Ndaw leaves after a working lunch with the French President at the Elysee presidential Palace in Paris, on Jan. 27, 2021. (Ludovic Marin/AFP via Getty Images)
Mali's Minister Moctar Ouane
Mali’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Moctar Ouane waves prior to a meeting with Indian External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee in New Delhi, India, on Jan. 16, 2009. (Raveendran/AFP via Getty Images)

The move came a day after President Bah N’Daw and Prime Minister Moctar Ouane were arrested by soldiers and brought to the military headquarters in Kati, about 15 kilometers (9 miles) outside the capital. Both men remained in detention Tuesday.

Their arrests prompted an outcry by the international community, which put out a strongly worded joint statement warning Mali’s military leaders that their actions could undermine global support for the transitional government.

Brittany Jordan is an award-winning journalist who reports on breaking news in the U.S. and globally for the Federal Inquirer. Prior to her position at the Federal Inquirer, she was a general assignment features reporter for Newsweek, where she wrote about technology, politics, government news and important global events around the world. Her work has also appeared in the Washington Post, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, Toronto Star, Frederick News-Post, West Hawaii Today, the Miami Herald, and more. Brittany enjoys food, travel, photography, and hoarding notebooks and journals. Her goal is to do more longform features journalism, narrative writing and documentary work, and to one day write a successful novel and screenplay.

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