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Guinea's Military Leader Recovering in Morocco From Gunshot Wounds

Doctors say Captain Moussa Dadis Camara, who flew to Morocco after being shot by men loyal to his former aide-de-camp, Lieutenant Aboubacar Sidiki Diakite, has had successful surgery

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Guinea's military leader is in a military hospital in Morocco where he is recovering from gunshot wounds sustained Thursday in an apparent assassination attempt.  Guinea is offering a reward for the capture of the former head of the presidential guard whose men are accused of the attack.

The Moroccan doctors of Guinea's military ruler, Captain Moussa Dadis Camara, say he has had successful surgery for head trauma and his condition is now "not worrying."

Captain Camara flew to Morocco after being shot by men loyal to his former aide-de-camp, Lieutenant Aboubacar Sidiki Diakite, who is also known as Toumba.  He escaped the attack and is still at large with a group of the presidential guard.

The government is offering a reward for Toumba's capture and has announced a toll-free number for information that might lead to his arrest.  Toumba's photograph is being broadcast on national television, and soldiers are searching cars in the capital.

A military spokesman told VOA that Toumba is wanted only for questioning and need not fear for his life just because his men are accused of trying to kill Captain Camara. Harouna Kone says Toumba, Captain Camara, and the country's acting leader Defense Minister Sekouba Konate are all part of the ruling military council, and Kone says, "sometimes you can have trouble in the family, but you have to sit and discuss."

Thursday's shooting followed an argument between Toumba and Captain Camara about who should take responsibility for the killing of opposition demonstrators two months ago.  Many witnesses say Toumba gave the order to open fire on people protesting Captain Camara's expected presidential candidacy.

Local human-rights groups say dozens of women were raped and at least 157 people were killed.  The military says 57 people died.

The Economic Community of West African States wants Guinea's military government to immediately put in place a new transitional authority leading to credible elections in early 2010 that do not include any members of the military council or its prime minister.

But Captain Camara's shooting, and the continuing uncertainty about his future, cast further doubt on presidential elections already rescheduled for January.  Several opposition politicians contacted Monday said they do not believe those elections will be held and are waiting to see what happens with Captain Camara's health before commenting further on the way forward.

Burkinabe President Blaise Compaore is the ECOWAS mediator for Guinea.  His plans for power sharing in an interim government have been rejected by opposition leaders who say they will not take part in any transitional authority that includes members of Guinea's military.  

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