UAE confirms it will provide medical treatment for ex-Mali president Ibrahim Keita

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The United Arab Emirates confirms it will provide medical treatment for former President of Mali Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, according to a UAE diplomat.

Mohamed Al Shamsi, Director of the African Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, said the decision comes in response to a request by the ruling military junta in Mali and in consultation with Mahamadou Issoufou, President of Niger, who is also the Chair of the Authority of the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, Heads of State and Government.

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“The UAE believes in the importance of restoring stability in Mali through a rapid and constructive political process that ensures the best outcome for the brotherly people of Mali and the Sahel Region,” al-Shamsi said.

A day earlier, Keita left Mali for medical treatment in Abu Dhabi, an adviser said, as talks about a transition back to civilian rule following last month’s military coup got off to a chaotic start.

Keita, 75, was hospitalized in the capital Bamako on Tuesday, six days after he was released from detention by the ruling junta, which seized power on August 18.

Keita’s medical condition is unclear. He had a benign tumor removed from his neck in 2016.

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