News / Africa

Guinea Presidential Campaign Suspended Over Violence

Guinea's acting president General Sekouba Konate, left, speaks with Prime Minister of the transitional government Jean Marie Dore during the inauguration ceremony of Camp Boiro in Conakry, (file photo)
Guinea's acting president General Sekouba Konate, left, speaks with Prime Minister of the transitional government Jean Marie Dore during the inauguration ceremony of Camp Boiro in Conakry, (file photo)

Guinea's electoral commission has suspended campaigning after clashes between rival supporters before the final round of presidential elections scheduled for this coming Sunday. 

Guinea's electoral commission has provisionally suspended campaigning pending the outcome of talks with both candidates, following two days of violence in the capital, Conakry.

Interim Prime Minister Jean-Marie Dore called an emergency Cabinet meeting and vowed to prosecute anyone who violates that ban by holding demonstrations.  Mr. Dore is expected to meet separately with former prime minister Cello Diallo and his electoral rival Alpha Conde in hopes of finding a way to keep the electoral timetable on track.

Police used tear gas to break up rival demonstrations by Diallo and Conde supporters Saturday and Sunday.  The groups clashed following last week's conviction of two senior electoral officials accused of falsifying results from June's first round of voting.

Conde's party brought the charges against the electoral commission president and his head of planning, who were found guilty of withholding results from some polling stations.  Diallo's party says the court decision is aimed at disrupting the electoral commission and delaying the second round of voting, in which Diallo is seen as the frontrunner.

Makale Traoré is Conde's campaign director.

Traore says Conde was surrounded at party headquarters by militants from other parties and the government had to send soldiers to free him.  She says one of her party's supporters was shot dead and another was injured.  Traore says it is useless to throw oil on the fire.  She says Conde's party wants to campaign peacefully.

Saliou Diallo is communications director for Diallo's party.

Diallo says the violence is unbelievable.  He says it is coming from people who do not want this election to happen and are trying to disrupt the process. Diallo says the violence is not coming from his party because they want the vote to take place on the 19th.  Some people are accusing Diallo's party of starting the violence, but he says, on the contrary, they are the victims.

Diallo is from the Peul ethnic group, which make up about 40 percent of Guinea's population. Conde is from the Malinke ethnic group, which make up about one-third of the population.  So violence between the two groups has far wider potential consequences, especially in a country that is trying to end nearly two years of military rule.

Speaking to reporters before the violence, the head of the European Union mission to Guinea, Alexander Lambsdorff urged both candidates to refrain from electoral rhetoric that antagonizes opponents.

Lambsdorff says it is not correct to have inflammatory speeches, speeches that use community aspects to inflame the situation.  He says these are unfounded accusations concerning the opposite camp and are things that would enrage their supporters.

Voter Mamadou Diallo says choosing a president should be bigger than ethnicity.

Diallo says voters in Guinea should avoid certain discussions because they will all meet again after the elections. Diallo says Guineans should forget hatred and ethnocentrism.

Voter Abdoulaye Daffe says supporting your candidate should not mean insulting his opponent.

Because there are only two candidates left, he says voters should not create arguments between themselves.  He says people should know how to protect their future.  If you are for someone, he says, you can support them as you like without provoking other people.

Voter Amara Soumah says it is up to Guinea's voters to ensure a peaceful election.

Soumah says it is up to us.  There will not be any violence if voters do not want violence, and that should be avoided at all costs.  Soumah says people in Guinea should accept the verdict of the polls because the one who wins will be the president of all the country.

In its announcement suspending the campaign, the electoral commission said that decision would not delay Sunday's scheduled vote.  But the rules for this election give both candidates 14 days to campaign before the polls.  So their time will either be cut short or the vote will be postponed.

You May Like

US Border Patrol Union Accused of Taking Sides on Immigration

Report alleges agents leaking info to immigration opponents, appearing at their private events; Center for Immigration Studies director defends agents' actions More

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Reporting from Somali capital for past decade, Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal has been working at one of Mogadishu's leading radio stations covering parliament More

Video Rights Monitor: Hate Groups' Use of Internet to Inflame, Recruit Growing

Wiesenthal Center's Abraham Cooper says extremists have become skilled at celebrating violence, ideology on Web More

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.
Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Interneti
X
Mike O'Sullivan
June 30, 2015 8:20 PM
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 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 US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of 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.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Syrians Flee IS Advance in Hasaka

The Syrian government said Monday it has taken back one of several districts in Hasaka overrun by Islamic State militants. But continued fighting elsewhere in the northern city has forced thousands of civilians from their homes. In this report narrated by Bill Rodgers, VOA Kurdish Service reporter Zana Omer describes the scene in Amouda, where some of the displaced are taking refuge.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video S. Korea Christians Protest Gay Rights Festival

The U.S. Supreme Court decision mandating marriage equality nationwide has energized gay rights supporters around the world. Gay rights remain a highly contentious issue in a key U.S. ally, South Korea, where police did a deft job Sunday of preventing potential clashes between Christian protesters and gay activists. Kurt Achin reports from Seoul.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Nubians in Kenya Face Land Challenges

East Africa's ethnic Nubians have a rich cultural history that dates back thousands of years, but in Kenya they are facing hardships, including the loss of lands they have lived on for generations. They say the government has reneged on its pledge to award them title deeds for the plots. VOA's Lenny Ruvaga reports.
Video

Video Military Experts Question New Russian Tank Capabilities

Russia has been showing off its new tank design – the Armata T-14. Designers claim it is 20 years ahead of current Western designs - and driving it feels like playing a computer game. But military analysts question those assertions, and warn the cost could be too heavy a burden for Russia’s struggling economy. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.
Video

Video In Syrian Crisis, Social Media Offer Small Comforts

Za’atari, a makeshift city in Jordan, may be the only Syrian refugee camp to tweet its activities, in an effort to keep donors motivated as the war in Syria intensifies and the humanitarian crisis deepens. Inside the camp, families say mobile phone applications help hold together families that are physically torn apart. VOA’s Heather Murdock reports.

VOA Blogs