Moussa Traoré

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Moussa Traoré
Full Name: Moussa Traoré
Origin: Kayes, French Sudan
Occupation: President of Mali (1968 - 1991)
Crimes: Mass murder
Type of Villain: Military Dictator

Moussa Traoré (born 25 September 1936-15 september 2020) is a Malian soldier and politician who was President of Mali from 1968 to 1991. As a Lieutenant, he led the military ousting of President Modibo Keïta in 1968. Thereafter he served as head of state until March 1991, when he was overthrown by popular protests and a military coup. He was twice condemned to death in the 1990s.


On May 16, 1977, former President Modibo Keïta suspiciously died in detention at the age of 62, leading to a strong popular mobilization: thousands of people attended his funeral, in which official delegations from neighboring countries also participated. (especially Guinea and Ivory Coast). The military regime reacted violently by making numerous arrests, but Moussa Traoré was obliged to explain to Radio-Mali the reasons for the death of Modibo Keita, due according to him to "an acute edema of the lungs", but these explanations do not convince anyone.

On February 28, 1978, Moussa Traoré arrested Tiécoro Bagayoko and Kissima Doukara, respectively Director of National Security and Minister of Defense, whom he accused of preparing a plot.

During the first elections of the second republic in 1979, Moussa Traoré was the only presidential candidato.

He proposes to move towards a political opening which allows him to acquire the support of certain intellectuals like Alpha Oumar Konaré who will accept the post of Minister of Arts and Culture for a few years.

In 1980, student demonstrations were repressed. Their leader Abdoul Karim Camara, known as "Cabral", died under torture on March 17, 1980.

In 1990 the National Congress of Democratic Initiative (CNID) was founded by lawyer Mountaga Tall and the Alliance for Democracy in Mali (ADEMA) by Abdramane Baba. These two associations go with the Association of Pupils and Students of Mali (AEEM) and the Malian Association of Human Rights (AMDH) to fight the regime of Moussa Traoré and demand multipartyism.

In 1993, Traoré was sentenced to death for "political crimes," largely focused on the murder of some 300 pro-democratic protesters in Bamako, but his sentence was later commuted. In 1999, he was once again sentenced to death with his wife Mariam Traoré, for "economic crimes": the embezzlement of the equivalent of US $ 350,000 during his government. President Alpha Oumar Konaré commuted these sentences to life imprisonment. Shortly before leaving office, on May 29, 2002, the year in which he served his second and final term, Konaré pardoned Mr. and Mrs. Traoré. Explaining his refusal to see the former president executed, Konaré felt that he had to be left alive so that he could see democracy settle in Mali, initially Traoré refused to be pardoned on the grounds that his properties had been looted. He has since retired from political life. 

He has refused to talk about his dark hours at a local jail in Markala and lives protected by military officers who guard the visits assigned by the government to avoid any adjustment of accounts, since it remains on Malian soil. In recent years, he had become a kind of wise old man whom his political rivals would consult. Traore dies in the september, 15 2020 after 2020 coup d'etat.