One Big Thing: Should Mali’s president step down?
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What is it?
- In Bamako, Mali’s capital, demonstrators calling for the resignation of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta have been met with a violent response from security forces, leaving 11 dead. The protests have been over the government’s inadequate COVID-19 response, the failing economy and a wave of Islamic insurgency.
- On July 19, opposition leaders rejected a plan to create a unity government saying they will stop at nothing short of the president’s resignation. Other regional leaders and international organizations have called for an end to the violence in Bamako.
Why is it important?
- Currently, Keïta does not intend to resign but has made concessions including freeing political prisoners. Despite this, his government’s violent response to the protests demonstrates the type of leadership he brings to the table.
- Since 2012, Mali has experienced violent conflict spurred by rebel groups and jihadists which has since created an instable environment and economy, leaving almost half of Malians to live on less that $1.90 per day.
What can you do?
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