(BAMAKO, Mali) -- After an Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) delegation was turned away from Mali by coup supporters on Thursday, the western bloc organization warned against sanctions on the nation.
Capt. Amadou Sanogo seized power of the West African nation on March 21 in protest against lack of equipment and weapons for soldiers to fight Tuareg rebels in the north of the country.
The ECOWAS delegates included Ivory Coast's President Alassane Ouattara – also leader of ECOWAS; Benin President Boni Yayi; Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf; Burkina Faso President Blaise Campaore and Niger President Mahamadou Issoufou.
Sanogo responded to the 72-hour sanction deadline threat on Friday by reiterating his plans to hold elections soon though he did not specify a date. The regional bloc says it will close Mali’s borders and freeze their bank accounts if power is not returned to civilians. Malian President Amadou Toumani Toure is reportedly safe though his location is unknown.
ECOWAS will meet a junta delegation on Saturday in neighboring Burkina Faso, reports BBC News.
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