Mali’s Coup Leader Sanogo Charged With Murders

Amadou Sanogo was a middle-ranking officer when he led the coup
Amadou Sanogo was a middle-ranking officer when he led the coup

Mali’s ex-coup leader has been charged with “murders and assassinations”, the justice ministry has said.

Armed troops went to Amadou Sanogo’s home to take him before a judge, after which he was remanded in custody.

He had repeatedly been called in for questioning over the deaths of six soldiers during an army protest in September but failed to appear.

The March 2012 coup plunged Mali into chaos, allowing Islamist militants to take over territory in the north.

The al-Qaeda-linked insurgents were ousted from the major towns in the north with the help of France and West African troops earlier this year.

The BBC’s Alex Duval Smith in the capital, Bamako, says people seem relieved at the general’s arrest, seeing it as a sign that the newly elected civilian government is finally showing its teeth to the military.

‘Tears of joy’

Gen Sanogo, who was a middle-ranking officer when he led the coup, was taken away in handcuffs from his home by about 25 armed soldiers for questioning.

The justice ministry confirmed he had been charged with “murder and assassination and complicity in murder and assassination”.

The former junta leader was also charged with kidnapping, a judicial source told the AFP news agency.

Gen Sanogo toppled President Amadou Toumani Toure, accusing him of not doing enough to combat a Tuareg-led rebellion in the north.


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