Mali’s coup leaders have been urged to release top government officials who have remained in detention since 18 August when President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita was ousted from office by the military.
Alioune Tine, a United Nations independent expert on the situation of human rights in Mali, called for the unconditional release of the officials.
According the UN human rights office (OHCHR), at least 13 people, among the 18 arrested by coup leaders on 18 August, are still in detention, including the country’s former prime minister Boubou Cissé.
Ousted president Keita was held in detention for 10 days, with the military justifying the move saying it was necessary for his own security. He was flown to the UAE for treatment after his release.
“There is no legal basis for detention of the former prime minister, the former president of the National Assembly, and other former Malian officials taken into custody in the coup d’état,” said Tine.
“I call on the National Committee for the Salvation of the People (CNSP) to comply with Mali’s international human rights obligations … everyone arrested during the coup must be released immediately and unconditionally.”
Earlier this week, Mali’s former defense minister and retired colonel Bah Ndaw was announced as the president of the country’s new transition government.
Ndaw will be in power for 18 months before holding elections and returning Mali to civilian rule.