Mali Military Junta Says 22 Detainees Released

Posted April 20th, 2012 at 12:55 am (UTC-5)
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Mali's renegade soldiers said late Thursday they have released 22 political and military leaders from detention.

The arrests earlier this week drew international condemnation.

Last month, the soldiers seized power in a military coup, but later agreed to the return of civilian rule in Mali.

After the economic regional bloc known as ECOWAS imposed harsh sanctions against coup leaders, the junta agreed last week to form a civilian transitional government to organize new elections.

Meantime, the office of Senegal's president announced ousted Mali president Amadou Toumani Toure and his family were flying Thursday to the Senegalese capital, Dakar.

Senegal President Macky Sall told reporters on Wednesday that Mr. Toure had been staying at the Senegalese embassy in the Malian capital after fleeing his residence during last month's coup.

Rogue soldiers who took part in the March 22nd coup accused Mr. Toure of failing to properly equip them to handle a Tuareg rebellion in the north.

Mr. Toure formally resigned on April 8, allowing the new interim government to take power.