Mali coup leader attacked during Eid prayers

Image: GETTY IMAGES.

Some men have attempted to stab Mali’s interim President Assimi Goïta at a mosque in the capital, Bamako.

Col Goïta was attending prayers to mark the Muslim festival of Eid ul-Adha at the Grand Mosque.

The authorities say the attackers, which according to the AFP news agency numbered two, have been arrested and the president taken to safety.

It is unclear if Col Goïta, who led a military takeover last August, was wounded.

Religious Affairs Minister Mamadou Kone told AFP that a man had “tried to kill the president with a knife”. The director of the mosque told the news agency the man had lunged for the president but wounded someone else.

Before last August’s coup, the country was facing demonstrations over corruption and the Islamist insurgency the vast landlocked country faces.

Col Goïta intervened again in May, replacing a transitional government and taking over as president – he promised to hand over to civilian rule as planned next year.

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