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Comoro Government Says Ready to Invade Rebel Island

In the Comoros Islands, the union government says it is ready to invade Anjouan and over throw embattled President Mohamed Bacar, whose presidency the government describes as illegal. This comes after President Ahmed Abdallah Mohamed Sambi vowed to take military action against Bacar saying the African Union proposed sanctions against Bacar’s government and ministers have failed. The Africa union imposed sanctions on Anjouan, one of three islands in the Indian Ocean archipelago, after its leader, Mohamed Bacar, defied the government by holding a local election in June, which he is alleged to have rigged.

But Bacar says he is ready to dialogue with the union government to resolve the political impasse. Ahmed Gaffar is the Comoros Island foreign minister. From the capital, Moroni he tells reporter Peter Clottey that the military option is inevitable.

“One month ago, the president made a declaration to the nation telling the people that we are ready we have been waiting for a long time for the African Union decision. We have had so many meetings from South Africa to Addis Ababa, may be we had 10 or 12 meetings about this crisis. So, the president now decided that we must take this problem to be out problem and try to get an internal solution. So, he decided that the army must be ready to go to Anjouan… there were many measures against the illegal authorities of Anjouan. So the population is very tired here and we are trying now to see how we can find a solution for those of us here in the Comoros,” Gaffar said.

He said all attempts to peacefully resolve the political crisis in Anjouan have been rejected by embattled President Bacar.

“We think that we have tried all options the last one was the International Organization of Francophone countries. They spent three weeks there holding discussions with Bacar and told him that it was enough and that it was time for him to accept a fresh elections in Anjouan, but he (Bacar) refused again. So, we know that Bacar would never accept and allow a free election to be held in Anjouan. And the African Union and the international community do not want us to use the military option against Anjouan. So we think now that the government must take up this responsibility,” he pointed out.

Gaffar said the union government would not negotiate with President Bacar.

“But negotiations for what? Because we know that Bacar is not ready for any discussion… even the international community knows that Bacar is not interested in any discussions. And how can we hold negotiations with some one who is illegal?” Gaffar asked.

Meanwhile President Sambi reportedly said The Union of Comoros does not want any more meetings or international conferences on the Anjouan crisis.