Mali’s President Amadou Toumani Toure has left the presidential palace, and at the U.S. Embassy in Bamako has requested political asylum.
In the early hours of Thursday a coup was staged by renegade Malian soldiers. They announced their intention to transfer power to a new democratically elected government. The Presidential Palace is controlled by the military. They are also holding the head of the Foreign Ministry Soumeylou Boubèye Maïga and Minister of Territorial Administration Kafuguna Kone.
The rebels are led by Captain Amadou Sanogo. The military have sealed off the borders of Mali and the country’s airspace.
EU High Representative for foreign affairs Catherine Ashton has condemned the military coup in Mali and the suspension of activity of constitutional institutions in the country.
At the same time, the Russian Ambassador Alexei Dumyan reported that the National Committee for the restoration of democracy, established by the military, is holding consultations on forming a national unity government.