On Monday, May 4, several protests were reported across the country, notably in Bamako, Sikasso, Bougouni, Kati, Yanfolila, Mopti, and Nioro, despite the ongoing coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak. Protesters gathered to denounce the results of the second round of legislative elections held on Sunday, April 19, claiming that the process was marred by fraud.
Further associated demonstrations are likely in the near term. A heightened security presence and localized traffic disruptions are anticipated around all protests.
The elections gave a majority to President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta with the ruling Rassemblement pour le Mali (RPM) party winning 51 out of the 147 seats at the National Assembly. According to protesters the results released on April 30 by the Constitutional Court do not match initial results released by the Ministry of the Territorial Administration, in which the ruling party won 43 seats.
Those in Mali are advised to keep abreast of the situation and sociopolitical climate and avoid all public gatherings due to the risk of exposure to potential crowd disturbances and incidental violence. The security environment in Mali remains complex. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel. Due to the underlying terrorist and kidnapping threats prevalent in the country, travelers are advised to remain discreet regarding personal details, particularly information concerning nationality, employment, family, etc. Individuals are also advised to avoid public events and high-profile places frequented by Westerners, to remain vigilant at all times (especially in local markets, now used by terrorists as recruitment grounds), and to report any suspicious objects or behavior to security forces.
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