New arrests in Madagascar after foiled coup

Twenty-one people, including generals, soldiers and police officers, have been arrested in Madagascar as part of the investigation into the planned assassination of President Andry Rajoelina.

New suspects were arrested in Madagascar in the wake of the foiled plan to assassinate President Andry Rajoelina, announced on Sunday 1er August, Attorney General Berthine Razafiarivony.

“On the plan to assassinate the President of the Republic, to date, 21 people have been arrested” and are being investigated, the Attorney General told reporters. Among the 21 people arrested, “12 are active military and gendarmes including five generals, two captains and five non-commissioned officers”, said the prosecutor. “There are also four national and foreign retired gendarmes and military and five other civilians,” she added.

Six people, including two French, were initially arrested on suspicion of involvement in the failed coup attempt.

A plot after months of turmoil

Of the 21 people arrested, “14 were taken into custody,” according to Berthine Razafiarivony. Police said 209, 300 euros were seized during the arrests, as well as a rifle and two cars.

Andry Rajoelina escaped an assassination attempt that prosecutors say was part of a conspiracy. “According to the physical evidence in our possession, these individuals have hatched a plan to eliminate and neutralize various Malagasy personalities including the head of state,” the prosecutor said on July 22, without further elaboration.

The plot revelations came after several months of turmoil marked by threats against journalists covering the Covid-19 pandemic in the country and the onset of famine in the south of the country.

Andry Rajoelina, 47, came to power in March 2009 with the support of the army. He won the last election in December 2018, defeating his rival and predecessor Marc Ravalomanana in a vote marred by accusations of fraud.


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