Guinea Mediation Resumes
Talks to resolve Guinea's political crisis resume Sunday in Burkina Faso. The military government and its political opponents are discussing a power sharing agreement that is being brokered by the regional political alliance.
Last updated on: December 13, 2009 2:16 PM
Sunday's talks in the Burkinabe capital Ouagadougou have been in doubt since Guinea's military leader was shot ten days ago.
While Captain Moussa Dadis Camara survived the apparent assassination attempt, there has been little news on his condition and no official word on when he might return to Guinea.
His ruling council initially said it was quitting these talks pending Captain Camara's recovery. But it has reversed that decision, with Foreign Minister Alexandre Cece Loua saying the military government is in Burkina Faso to meet its international commitments.
Loua says the ruling council reaffirms its membership in both the Economic Community of West African States and the African Union despite sanctions imposed following the killing of opposition demonstrators two months ago. And the foreign minister says the government will continue to cooperate with the International Contact Group on Guinea as it has done since February.
Prime Minister Kabine Komara says the talks must continue "in a spirit that takes the current situation into account," calling for concessions in Ouagadougou because he says, "Everyone needs to understand that the higher interest of the nation must prevail."
Burkinabe President Blaise Compaore is proposing a 30-member transitional authority to return Guinea to civilian rule following last December's coup. His offer gives ten seats to the military, ten to the opposition coalition, and ten to other groups.
It is the nature of those other groups that has led the opposition coalition of political parties and civil society groups to reject that proposal because it believes those groups will be closely allied to the military, thus giving soldiers a majority in the interim administration.
Defense Minister Sekouba Konate has taken charge of the council during Captain Camara's recovery and has spent much of the last week calling for military discipline and respect for civilians.
That has drawn cautious praise from some opposition politicians and human rights leaders. Regional diplomats hope the change will help persuade Guinea's opposition coalition to soften its refusal to participate in a transitional authority with members of the ruling military council.