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Mali front-runner expects victory in runoff vote

August 4, 2013

BAMAKO, Mali (AP) — The top vote-getter in the first round of Mali’s presidential election expressed confidence he would receive enough endorsements from other candidates to propel him to victory in a runoff vote scheduled for Aug. 11.

In his first remarks since officials announced July 30 that he earned 39.2 percent of the vote, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita on Sunday asked voters for a “clear and clean” majority in the runoff.

The election is seen as a new beginning for a country that fell victim to a military coup in March 2012 and then lost half of its territory to various rebel groups before France intervened militarily earlier this year.

Keita, known by his initials, “IBK,” will face off against former Finance Minister Soumaila Cisse, who received 19.4 percent of the July 28 vote.

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