Rajoelina led months of protests against Ravalomanana, accusing him of misspending public funds and behaving like a dictator.

'Confident' of return

The crisis escalated further in February when police opened fire on protesters, killing at least 28 people.

More died in subsequent clashes and, faced with increasing street protests, Ravalomanana quit the presidency in March, after losing the support of elements of the military.

Rajoelina then took over power, backed by the army.

The United States and the European Union described the transition as a "coup", while the African Union suspended Madagascar on March 20 and told the new administration to hold an election within six months.

Ravalomanana, who fled to Swaziland, has told Al Jazeera he is "confident" he will return home.