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Mali military junta: Again, Buhari, ECOWAS leaders hold emergency meeting

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By Ismaila Chafe (NAN)

President Muhammadu Buhari has again joined other Heads of State and Government of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in an emergency virtual extraordinary summit over the ongoing political crisis in Mali.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the ECOWAS leaders had earlier met, via video conferencing on Aug. 20, to deliberate on same matter where they called for immediate release of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita of Mali, and a return to Constitutional order in the country.

NAN observed that the ousted Malian president, Keita, was released from detention by the military junta on Aug. 27 in line with the request of the ECOWAS leaders.

NAN gathered that the ongoing summit of the ECOWAS leaders would review the socio-political situation in Mali, following the insistence of the Malian military junta to stay in power for three years before returning the country to constitutional order.

The summit, chaired by current ECOWAS Chairman and President of Niger Republic, Mahmadou Issoufu, is also expected to consider the report of ECOWAS Envoy to Mali, former Nigerian President, Goodluck Jonathan, who recently returned from Mali, where he interacted with leadership of the military junta.

Those with the president at the Council Chamber for the meeting include Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama and Minister of State, Foreign Affairs, Zubairu Dada.

Others are National Security Adviser to the President, retired Maj.-Gen. Babagana Monguno and Director General National Intelligence Agency, Abubakar Ahmed Rufai among others. (NAN)

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