A French citizen is among six suspects arrested over a failed plot to murder Madagascar’s President Andry Rajoelina and other top political figures in the Indian Ocean island nation, according to officials.
“One of the arrested people is French, two of them are bi-national: Malagasy and French. The three others are Malagasy,” Rodellys Fanomezantsoa Randrianarison, the public security minister, said late on Thursday.
Patrick Rajoelina, an adviser to the president, said two of those arrested had previously worked in the French military.
The announcements came a day after authorities said several foreign and Malagasy suspects had been arrested on Tuesday as part of an investigation “into an attack on state security”.
Attorney General Berthine Razafiarivony said the foiled plot included the “killing and neutralisation” of senior political figures, other than the president, giving no further details about the alleged plan.
Randrianarison previously said police had relevant information “for months”. They swooped to make simultaneous arrests in different locations and seized money and weapons, he added.
“There are also official documents which prove their involvement,” he said. “The foreigner hid his harmful schemes behind his business activity.”
Rajoelina was sworn in as president in 2019 after a hard-fought election beset by allegations of fraud and a constitutional court challenge from his main rival and predecessor Marc Ravalomanana.