Mali’s former prime minister Boubou Cisse and other officials and military personnel detained during the August coup have been released, according to a statement by the vice president, Colonel Assimi Goita.
The former head of the national assembly, Moussa Timbine, and eight generals, including Colonel-Major Faguimba Kansaye and Ibrahima Dahirou Dembele, were among those released. However, they will remain at the disposition of the courts if needed.
“The vice-president of the transition…informs the public of the release today of political and military figures arrested following the events of August 18, 2020,” Vice President Assimi Goita said in a statement late Wednesday.
“However, the interested parties remain at the disposal of justice for all useful purposes,” Goita added.
The senior figures had been held since the ouster of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, which alarmed Mali’s foreign partners who feared it would further destabilise the country and undermine a joint fight against Islamist militants in the wider Sahel region.
On Monday, the transitional government announced a new cabinet in which members of the junta were handed several key posts including defence, security, territorial administration and national reconciliation.
The release of political and military figures was one of the demands of international powers including the West African regional bloc, ECOWAS, which this week lifted economic sanctions against Mali.