News

ECOWAS Condemns Guinea Violence

ECOWAS Condemns Guinea Violence
ECOWAS Condemns Guinea Violence

Multimedia

Audio
  • Abdelfatau Musah, ECOWAS Political Director Spoke With Clottey

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) is expressing "disgust" at the violence in Guinea that left at least 58 people dead and several seriously injured.

<!-- IMAGE -->

Heavily armed security forces shot at thousands of protesters who were attempting to hold a rally at a national stadium against the possible presidential candidacy of military ruler Captain Moussa Dadis Camara. 

Abdelfatau Musah is the ECOWAS political director. He told VOA that the sub-regional body wants the soldiers to return to the barracks.

"(We are) angry and disgusted. We requested that Captain Moussa Dadis Camara unambiguously declared his intention not to run in the forthcoming election because that is the bone of contention. Very little did we expect that he will go to this extent," Musah said.

He said the sub-regional body sharply condemns the violence.

"We are issuing a statement right now, today, condemning the violence in the strongest possible term," he said.

Musah said ECOWAS demands that the soldiers return to their camps.

"(We want them) to ask the military to get back immediately to the barracks and then to make sure that the preparation for the elections are put back on the agenda and that Dadis Camara goes back to the barracks and never even attempt to become a candidate in this election," Musah said.

He said Africans are not over-enthused about military dictatorship.

"The people of West Africa and for that matter Africa are learning everyday that the military rule is not the solution to their problems and they have rejected it and it is out of fashion today," he said.

<!-- IMAGE -->

Musah praised the work of civil society groups in Guinea.

"When you have a country where the civil society is cowed, they cannot do anything against authorities and we are happy in the belief that the civil society in Guinea is very steadfast and they know what they want and they are demanding it and they will prevail in the end," Musah said.

He said ECOWAS is still pursuing sanctions against Conakry.

"Already you know Guinea is under sanctions. Under ECOWAS protocol we've got what we call graduated sanctions. Now, Guinea is suspended from meetings at the level of heads of state and at the ministerial level. We can go further… and that will be the next step if he decides to go back on his promises," he said.

Musah said the military ruler is being influenced by suspected drug dealers.

"He came pretending to fight against the drug trafficking and others and today we know that some of the drug barons in Guinea are some of his advisors," Musah said.

He said ECOWAS could employ its military might if the crackdown on protesters continues.

"We do not rule out intervention by the ECOWAS standby forces in Guinea," he said.

Musah said the sub-regional body will ensure Guineans enjoy the tenets of democracy despite the coup leader's attempt to participate in the upcoming election.

Captain Moussa Dadis Camara seized power in a coup d'état shortly after long time President Lansana Conte died in December last year.

He initially enjoyed enormous support after the takeover, but his popularity sharply waned after he refused to abide his promise not to participate in the presidential election.              

<!-- IMAGE -->

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Getting it Done Beyond a Nuclear Deali
X
July 07, 2015 12:02 PM
If a nuclear deal is reached between Iran and world powers in Vienna, it will be a highly technical road map to be used to monitor nuclear activity in Iran for years to come to ensure Tehran does not make nuclear weapons. Equally as complicated will be dismantling international sanctions that were originally intended to be ironclad. VOA’s Heather Murdock talks to experts about the key challenges any deal will present.
Video

Video Getting it Done Beyond a Nuclear Deal

If a nuclear deal is reached between Iran and world powers in Vienna, it will be a highly technical road map to be used to monitor nuclear activity in Iran for years to come to ensure Tehran does not make nuclear weapons. Equally as complicated will be dismantling international sanctions that were originally intended to be ironclad. VOA’s Heather Murdock talks to experts about the key challenges any deal will present.
Video

Video Rice Farmers Frustrated As Drought Grips Thailand

A severe drought in Thailand is limiting the growing season of the country’s important rice crop. Farmers are blaming the government for not doing more to protect a key export. Steve Sandford reports from Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Video

Video Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugees

In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video 'From This Day Forward' Reveals Difficult Journey of Transgender Parent

In her documentary, "From This Day Forward", filmmaker Sharon Shattuck reveals the personal journey of her transgender father, as he told his family that he always felt he was a woman inside and decided to live as one. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Floodwaters Threaten Iconic American Home

The Farnsworth House in the Midwest State of Illinois is one of the most iconic homes in America. Thousands of tourists visit the site every year. Its location near a river inspired the design of the house, but, as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, that very location is now threatening the existence of this National Historic Landmark.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.

VOA Blogs