International bodies condemn arrests by Mali junta

By REUTERS
April 19, 2012 02:24

 
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BAMAKO - International organizations condemned a wave of arrests by Mali's military rulers extended into a third day on Wednesday despite an agreement by the junta to restore constitutional order.

The West African state has been in crisis since a March 22 coup derailed a planned April election and brought about a collapse of internal front lines as Tuareg separatists and Islamist rebels advanced and seized vast northern desert zones.

Some 22 people, including many figures allied with Mali's ousted President Amadou Toumani Toure's administration, have been detained by soldiers since Monday, including at least three on Wednesday, even after the junta agreed to hand power to a civilian transitional president.

The United Nations said on Wednesday that Secretary General Ban Ki-moon was concerned by the "renewed wave of arrests" and urged the junta to "refrain from any further actions that might undermine the effective restoration of constitutional rule".

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