Mali authorities release radio host after protests


Mali authorities on Thursday released a prominent talk show radio host from prison after his arrest sparked protests in the capital Bamako in which one person was shot dead and others wounded.

Mohamed Youssouf Bathily, who often attacks policies of the government of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta on his radio show, was arrested on Monday on accusations of commiting an outrage against public decency. The specific reason for his arrest was not clear.
“He was released yesterday [Thursday] evening,” said a security source on Friday who spoke on condition of anonymity. A second security source confirmed his release.

Crowds of supporters took to the streets in a series of protests this week. On Wednesday, police fired tear gas to disperse the protests, and one person was killed.

The protest reflected public discontent in Mali over corruption, unemployment, the cost of living, insecurity linked to separatist violence in the north of the country and attacks by Islamist militants.