An assassination attempt on Madagascar President Andry Rajoelina has been foiled and several “foreign and Malagasy” suspects arrested, prosecutor says.

Republic of Madagascar President Andry Rajoelina (C) arrives at the Queen's Palace of Manjakamiadana, in the upper city of Antananarivo, on November 6, 2020.
Republic of Madagascar President Andry Rajoelina (C) arrives at the Queen's Palace of Manjakamiadana, in the upper city of Antananarivo, on November 6, 2020. (AFP)

Madagascar's government has foiled an assassination attempt on President Andry Rajoelina.

The prosecutor general's office in Madagascar said it also arrested several "foreign and Malagasy" suspects.

"Several foreign and Madagascar nationals were arrested on Tuesday, July 20, as part of an investigation into an attack on state security," said prosecutor Berthine Razafiarivony, in a statement released overnight Wednesday. 

"At this stage of the investigation, which is ongoing, the prosecutor general's office assures we will shed light on this case," she added.

Two French nationals are among those who were arrested on Tuesday, diplomatic sources told AFP.

The two are retired military officers, according to Taratra, a local news agency operation to the communications ministry.

Rajoelina was sworn in as president of the Indian Ocean island country in 2019 after a hard-fought election and a constitutional court challenge from his rival.

READ MORE: Rajoelina confirmed winner of Madagascar presidential election

"According to the evidence in our possession, these individuals had devised a plan for the elimination and neutralisation of a number of people including the head of state," the attorney general said in a statement.

It added that investigations were under way and further details could not be disclosed. 

The extent of the plot, or how far advanced, was not immediately clear.

A separate statement by the public security minister on Wednesday said that six people had been arrested: one foreign national, two bi-nationals, and three Madagascan nationals.

"The police had information for several months, but only now was there an opportunity to arrest them," the statement read. 

During the country's Independence Day celebrations on June 26, the gendarmerie announced that they had foiled an assassination attempt on their boss who is also the president's right-hand man, General Richard Ravalomanana.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies