People injured in the stampede were brought to local hospitals for treatment [AFP]  

At least 36 people have been killed in an overnight stampede at a stadium in Bamako, Mali's capital.

Thousands of people had gathered at the Modibo Keita stadium to listen to a Muslim preacher, who was speaking as part of the Muslim festival of Maouloud, when the stampede started.

According to the head of emergency services at the city's Gabriel Toure hospital, at least 64 people were wounded in Monday's incident, five of whom were in serious condition.

There was no official explanation for the stampede but one witness told the Reuters news agency that it started when people surged forward to touch the preacher for good luck.

Meanwhile, other reports said the incident occurred as tens of thousands of people were attempting to leave through a metallic enclosure.

An official involved in the organisation of the event said nearly all those killed were women.

Anguished families gathered outside the hospital, where the staff were preparing to post a list of the dead on Tuesday morning.

At least 26 people were killed during Maouloud last year in a stampede near a mosque in Mali's northern desert city of Timbuktu. 

Source: Agencies