- ECOWAS leaders are currently meeting virtually
- This is due to the recent military coup in member state Mali
- ECOWAS had already strongly condemned the change of government in Mali
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West African leaders are currently meeting virtually to discuss the military coup in Mali that ousted President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita.
This was revealed in a tweet by Bashir Ahmad, one of the spokespersons of Nigeria's Muhammadu Buhari.
The mutinous soldiers, who have closed Mali’s borders and announced a curfew, call themselves the so-called National Committee for the Salvation of the People and have promised a transition to what they have called civil political rule.
They have said snap elections will be held after a “reasonable amount of time.”
ECOWAS had already strongly condemned the change of government in Mali as it was mediating in the crisis before the military action on Tuesday, August 18.
The African Union (AU) had also on Wednesday, August 19 suspended Mali a day after the coup.
The AU joined other international bodies and nations, including the US and European Union, to condemn the coup and demand the release of the detained leaders.
France foreign minister also called for the immediate release of the political prisoners, called for political dialogue and a return to civilian rule.
The African country, which is already fighting widespread militancy, has been beset by nationwide demonstrations against Keita since June, with protesters calling for his resignation over what they see as the government’s failure to restore security and deal with corruption.
The United Nations and human rights activists say at least 14 people lost their lives in the recent anti-government protests.
Meanwhile, Assimi Goita, a colonel in the Malian army, has declared himself head of the “National Committee for the salvation of the People.”
The National Committee for the salvation of the People is a group created by rebels in the West African country.
Goita announced his new position after a meeting with top civil servants on Wednesday, August 19.
The leader of the mutinous soldiers also informed journalists that Prime Minister Cisse and Keita were with them in Bamako, Mali's capital.
Later, another military source claimed the president and the prime minister had been taken to a key base in Kati, a town close to Bamako.
Earlier, Legit.ng reported that Keita tendered his resignation on Wednesday, August 19, amid the political unrest in Mali, hours after his arrest.
Keita said he has resigned from his position in order to avoid bloodshed and violence between his loyalists and the opposition.
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