Mali Coup Underway As Mutinying Soldiers Storm President's Palace, Arrest Country's Leaders

A military coup is underway in the West African country of Mali, as amid an armed uprising defected soldiers have “arrested” President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and Prime Minister Boubou Cisse, according to the breaking AFP report.

Soldiers were seen storming the president's residence in the evening hours Tuesday (local time), and the pair of leaders were reportedly transferred to a rebel military base near the capital of Bamako.

Prior file image, Mali's President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita (R) reviews troops in Kati, via AFP

The mutiny is being condemned by the United States, France and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), after beginning earlier in the day at the Kati military base which lies 15 km outside Bamako.

Gunfire could be heard as chaos erupted, and a number of senior civilian government as well as military officials were detained in the mutiny.

The country had seen rolling mass protests since June over widespread allegations of corruption and a deteriorating security situation, in what some citizens have condemned as a sense of lawlessness due to corrupt security forces and officials tasked with overseeing them.