Mali presidency says President Goita targeted by stabbing attack

This image taken from video shows Mali's interim president Assimi Goita (center) as he waves to supporters after Eid al-Adha prayers at The Grande Mosque in Bamako on July 20, 2021, following an attack during prayers by armed men. (MALICK KONATE / AFP)

BAMAKO – Mali’s interim President Assimi Goita was the target of an attempted stabbing attack during Eid al-Adha prayers at Bamako’s Grand Mosque, the West African nation’s presidency said in a statement on Twitter on Tuesday.

“The attacker was immediately overpowered by security. Investigations are ongoing,” the presidency said.

Two military sources told Reuters that Goita was unharmed following the attack.

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Idrissa Kone, a caretaker at the mosque, said he had seen an attacker approach the president and the president and his security guards draw their weapons.

Goita, a 38-year-old special forces colonel, took power in June following his second overthrow of a president in nine months.