World News

Mali Holds Presidential Election

Voters in Mali cast ballots Sunday for a new president for the first time after a chaotic 18 months that saw a military coup, an Islamist takeover of the north, and French-led military intervention.

Security was tight and the voting was free of violence, despite threats by Tuareg separatists.

VOA correspondent Anne Look says election officials are reporting a record-high voter turnout and describes the mood in the country as happy.

Candidates for the new president include two former prime ministers -- Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and Modibo Sidibe. The two other top candidates are Somalia Cisse, who ran the West African Monetary Union, and a relative unknown, Dramane Dembele, who is backed by Mali's largest political party, ADEMA.



They are seeking to replace interim President Dioncounda Traore, who was appointed last year. If no candidate wins a majority, the two top-scoring challengers will head to a runoff on August 11.

OPTIONAL SOUNDBITE

VOTER

"It's giving me a great pleasure, it's a great pleasure, I want a good president for my country. The time has come for a change in Mali. We are in a hurry for that, I'm even in a hurry to get into the bureau to vote."

FEATURED STORY

Relatives cry as the bodies of their family members, who died in Saturday's earthquake, are prepared for cremation along a river in Kathmandu, Nepal, April 28, 2015.

Multimedia Quake Overwhelms Nepal

VOA's Steve Herman describes the scene in Kathmandu, where quake survivors persevere despite death toll, which now exceeds 4,300 More

UNOCHA
UNOCHA
United Nations
United Nations
Steve Herman
Steve Herman
UNOCHA
United Nations
United Nations
United Nations