Weeks after leading the second coup in Mali in nine months, colonel Asimi Guetta He appointed a new government in the country’s transitional government, with army officers receiving the ministries of Defense, Security and Strategic National Reconciliation.

An announcement on national television reported, on Friday, that Colonel Sadio Camara, one of the leaders of the August 2020 coup that ousted former President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta, has returned as defense minister.

Guetta, who was the vice president in the transitional administration that was eventually formed after Keita’s ouster, in late May orchestrated another coup that ousted interim President Bah Ndao and Prime Minister Mukhtar Awani.

The colonel accused the couple of not consulting with him about a cabinet reshuffle that would have replaced Camara from his post, as well as Modibo Kone, who was in charge of security.

Kony was not included in the new government’s lineup. He appointed another colonel, Daoud Ali Muhammedin, as Minister of Security.

Guetta, who was vice president under the previous transitional government, was sworn in this week as interim president despite international condemnation of last month’s coup.

The African Union and the 15-nation Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) regional bloc have suspended Mali, while France, which has thousands of troops in the war-torn country, has suspended military cooperation.

On Thursday, French President Emmanuel Macron announced plans to ل Reducing his country’s 5,100-strong force A military operation fighting armed groups in the Sahel region of West Africa.

Al Jazeera’s Nicolas Haq, who has provided extensive reporting on Mali, said many of the cabinet members were “familiar names” because they were members of the military government.

“The new face is Abdallah Diop, who will be foreign minister,” Haq said. “He will have the difficult task of rebuilding relations with international actors, notably the Economic Community of West African States that imposed sanctions on Mali and suspended the country from the union – but most importantly, reconnect with France.”

Guetta appointed a civilian chief minister, Chogoel Kokala Maiga, in line with international demands, and said he would hold elections in February 2022.


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