//Mali’s Protest Movement Finally Meets Junta I

Mali’s Protest Movement Finally Meets Junta I

Mali’s June 5 protest movement that mobilized for weeks against President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta has given its vote of confidence on the junta that overthrew the country’s former leader.

On Wednesday the group said it was ready to join in the transition process that should return power to civilians.

The meeting presented as contact between the military and protest leaders, lasted about an hour, and took place at the headquarters of the Kati camp, about 15 kilometers from Bamako, which has become the headquarters of the new government.

It is to be followed by another one, on Saturday, in the presence of the head of the junta, Colonel Assimi Goïta, who was absent on Wednesday.

“We told the junta that it would be useful to have substantive discussions afterwards. They agree and they said they are going to consult the people,” said Modibo Koné, a member of the delegation of this motley coalition of political opponents, religious leaders and members of civil society.

The M5-RFP had welcomed the coup, believing that the military had “completed” its struggle. Thousands of its supporters cheered the military in Bamako on August 21.

The junta promised to return power to civilians within an unspecified time frame, and since last week has been consulting with political and social forces, as well as representatives of the international community, such as the head of the UN mission in Mali (Minusma), Mahamat Saleh Annadif, on Tuesday.

(AFP)