Madagascar. Despite the 2011 agreement on a return to democracy and permission for leaders in exile to return, Madagascar authorities closed the airspace of former President Marc Ravalomanana in January. Ravalomanana was to leave exile in South Africa and was on his way to Madagascar when the airspace was closed and his plane forced to turn around. Ravalomanana had been living in exile since being driven out of Madagascar after the 2009 military coup. In protest against Ravalomanana not being allowed to return, his party announced that they would interrupt government cooperation.
In November 2011, another former president, Didier Ratsiraka, had returned without problems after nine years of exile in France. The agreement on a return to democracy had been negotiated by Madagascar’s political leader with the help of the South African Regional Cooperation Organization (SADC) in September 2011, and a transitional government had been formed.
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Two cyclones hit Madagascar at the beginning of the year, causing the deaths of about 100 people. In mid-February, at least 35 people died and 240,000 became homeless as cyclone Giovanna advanced across the island. Two weeks later, the cyclone killed Irina at least 65 people and left about 70,000 homeless. The southeastern parts of the island were worst hit by floods and landslides. Cyclones are common in Madagascar, especially during the rainy season from February to May.
On July 23, a group of army soldiers mutated, which was defeated by government-loyal soldiers after less than a day. The myth happened in a military location a mile from the international airport in the capital Antananarivo. The rebellious soldiers had entrenched themselves in a building stormed by the army, which also killed the leader of the Mysteries, a corporal. Two of the mythists and two from the security forces were injured in the shooting. According to the authorities, the requirements of the myths were unknown.
Madagascar President Andry Rajoelina and his representative Marc Ravalomanana met for the first time on July 25 since the latter was driven out of the country after the 2009 military coup. The meeting between Rajoelina and Ravalomanana was held in Seychelles and was chaired by South African President Jacob Zuma. The regional cooperation organization SADC, which excluded Madagascar after the coup, had given the men a deadline until July 31 to agree on a new timetable for elections and return to democratic rule in Madagascar.
The agreement between Ravalomanana and Rajoelina was delayed until September. But already in August, the Election Commission announced that elections would be held in 2013: presidential elections in May, elections to the National Assembly (House of Commons) in July, local elections in October and Senate elections after that.
According to countryaah, the population of Madagascar in 2012 was 24,233,977, ranking number 52 in the world. The population growth rate was 2.760% yearly, and the population density was 41.6540 people per km2.