Today at 07.00pm Madagascar time, following the instructions of Colonel André Ndriarijaona, self-proclaimed chief of Malagasy army Staff (he ousted the current Chief of Staff, General Edmond Rasolomahandry, last wednesday), militaries with armoured division, have attacked the Presidential Palace located in Ambotsirohitra (downtown of Antananarivo).
They shoot in the air to disperse people and forced the gate of the palace. They faced no resistance because there was nobody at the palace (the president Marc Ravalomanana, the Presidential Guard (GP) and the presidential staff, have all moved to Iavoloha Presidential Palace (suburb of Antananarivo) since last wednesday).
Now, the whole district of Ambotsirohitra and Antaninarenina is forbidden to public access.
“I have obeid to orders from the president”
Colonel André Ndriarijaona, the self-proclaimed Chief of Malagasy Army Staff, has stated after taking the Ambotsirohitra Presidential Palace that he has just implemented the instructions of Andry Rajoelina, president of HAT (High Authority of Transition).
“I order all security forces to arrest Marc Ravalomanana”
Early at noon during the opposition’s rally at “place du 13 mai”, Mrs. Christine Razanamahasoa, minister of Justice within Andry rajoelina’s transitional administration, declared that she has just issued an arrest warrant against Marc Ravalomanana for “High Treason”.
Andry Rajoelina declared after that in order to support the decision of Mrs. Christine Razanamahasoa, he ordered all security forces (Army, Gendarmerie and Police) to arrest Marc Ravalomanana “wherever he is and whatever it takes”.
Iavoloha Presidential Palace
Now, the president Marc Ravalomanana, his wife Lalao Ravalomanana, and all the elements of the GP (Presidential Guard), are in Iavoloha Presidential Palace. Since last Friday, the Iavoloha Presidential Palace has been kept by thousand of Ravalomanana supporters. These people do not have weapons but are all ready to die “on the name of legality”. 02 weeks ago, Lalao Ravalomanana has not been allowed to leave Madagascar for Mauritius. Only their children have been allowed to take their flight. The presidential airplane “Madagascar Force II” is under the custody of mutineer soldiers in Ivato International Airport. Yesterday, Marc Ravalomanana said that he would not leave Madagascar and that he was ready to die.
Colonel André Ndriarijaona threatens ….
At 08.00pm Madagascar time, André Ndriarijaona, self-proclaimed Chief of Malagasy Army staff, declared that all the civilians who keep the Iavoloha Presidential Palace, have to leave immediately their position, because, they (the Army) is going “to clean the way to Iavoloha”.
Such declaration confirmed the suspicion of the Ravalomanana supporters that the Army was planning to attack the Iavoloha Presidential Palace tonight. Radio Mada (private FM radio which belongs to Marc Ravalomanana) has already called people to join Iavoloha earlier in the afternoon, to protect president’s life.
Now, the current minister of defence, Vice-Admiral Mamy Ranaivoniarivo (he was forced by the mutineers to resign last tuesday) regularly, through Radio Mada, urges militaries not to obey Colonel André Ndriarijaona’s instructions and to remain (or to go back) to their barracks.
Now, it is midnight in Antananarivo, I am still waiting …