News

UN Secretary-General Receives Report on Guinea Protesters' Killing

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon has received the report of an international commission of inquiry into September's killing of opposition protesters in Guinea. Human rights leaders in Guinea say the international community must hold accountable those responsible for the violence.

Multimedia

Audio

The secretary-general says he is now considering the report and will then pass it on to  Guinea's military government, the African Union, the Economic Community of West African States, and the U.N. Security Council.

The three-member commission spent ten days in Conakry hearing testimony from security officials and opposition demonstrators who were at the national stadium September 28.

Local human rights groups say dozens of women were raped and at least 157 people were killed demonstrating against the expected candidacy of military ruler Captain Moussa Dadis Camara. His government says 57 people died, most in the crush of people fleeing the stadium.

Now that the U.N. commission has finished its report, human rights leaders in Guinea say the international community must hold accountable those responsible for the violence.

Tierno Madjou Sow is president of Guinea's Human Rights Organization. He says the military government has committed crimes against humanity to be brought before the International Criminal Court.

Sow says he is certain the violence of September 28 was organized because many civilian and public security officials have testified about how it was pre-planned. Sow says you can see how it was premeditated in the way it was carried out, in the way that protesters were allowed to enter the stadium, then all of the doors were closed.

Aliou Barry heads Guinea's national observer group on human rights.

Barry says what is important is that there is a phenomena of impunity in Guinea that does not punish people responsible for human rights violations. People who torture live together with their victims. Since September 28, Barry says no one has been arrested. And victims are afraid, especially women who have given testimony about being raped.

In addition to the U.N. investigation, Guinea's military government has its own inquiry. That commission's president, Sirman Kouyate, says the group has already heard testimony from opposition leaders, civil society leaders, and security chiefs.

Kouyate says the commission of inquiry's sub-committees have now begun their work on the ground to investigate what happened.

But the commission raised questions this week when the head of its sub-committee investigating rape said there were no confirmed cases of sexual assault reported at the Donka National Hospital.

Because she says most of the women who claim to have been raped waited more than one month to seek medical treatment, subcommittee chair Pierrette Tolno says the commission  now concludes there were no confirmed cases of rape relating to September's violence.

Corinne Dufka heads the West Africa office for Human Rights Watch.

"There were a number of women who actually did seek medical treatment according to doctors who I interviewed at Danka Hospital. They said they treated three or four women for splinters, for hemorrhages secondary to being raped with sticks or guns or other objects. So women did get treated in the hospital," said Dufka.

Human Rights Watch Thursday released the most comprehensive report to date on the September 28 killing. It says the violence was an organized, premeditated operation by members of the presidential guard, gendarmes, police, and civilian militia.

Captain Camara blames the violence on both his political opponents and what he calls "uncontrollable elements" of the military.

The former head of the presidential guard says he shot Captain Camara in the head two week ago because the captain was trying to blame him for the September violence. In an interview with French radio, Lieutenant Aboubacar Diakite says he will not turn himself in because he believes he will be killed to cover-up what happened September 28.

Captain Camara is recovering in a Moroccan military hospital. There has been little news about his condition and no official word on when he might return to Guinea.
 

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.
Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thoughti
X
George Putic
May 26, 2015 9:26 PM
Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video US-led Coalition Gives Some Weapons to Iraqi Troops

In a video released Tuesday from the Iraqi Ministry of Defense, Iraqi forces and U.S.-led coalition troops survey a cache of weapons supplied to help Iraq liberate Mosul from Islamic State group. According to a statement provided with the video, the ministry and the U.S.-led coaltion troops have started ''supplying the 16th army division with medium and light weapons in preparation to liberate Mosul and nearby areas from Da'esh (Arabic acronym for Islamic State group).''
Video

Video Amnesty International: 'Overwhelming Evidence' of War Crimes in Ukraine

Human rights group Amnesty International says there is overwhelming evidence of ongoing war crimes in Ukraine, despite a tentative cease-fire with pro-Russian rebels. Researchers interviewed more than 30 prisoners from both sides of the conflict and all but one said they were tortured. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Washington Parade Honors Those Killed Serving in US Military

Every year, on the last Monday in the month of May, millions of Americans honor the memories of those killed while serving in the armed forces. Memorial Day is a tradition that dates back to the 19th Century. While many people celebrate the federal holiday with a barbecue and a day off from work, for those who’ve served in the military, it’s a special day to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice. Arash Arabasadi reports for VOA from Washington.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.

VOA Blogs