Deposed Central African president Francois Bozize, who fled his country after rebels seized it at the weekend, has sought asylum in Benin, the foreign minister said on Thursday.
"It is true that he (Bozize) has asked Benin to host him," Arifari Bako told AFP, but added that "he is not in Cotonou at the moment."
"It is a delicate issue," said Bako, declining to give further details before the return of President Thomas Boni Yayi on Friday from South Africa.
The presidency in Cameroon had indicated on Sunday that Bozize was in that country "waiting to depart to another host country."
Twenty-eight members of Bozize's family are in Kinshasa, capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Rebels of the Seleka -- which means "alliance" -- seized the capital Bangui on Sunday, ousting Bozize, 66, on the grounds that his regime had failed to honour a peace agreement.
Bozize, who himself came to power in a coup in 2003 after ousting elected president Ange-Felix Patasse, fled to Cameroon.