Military leaders dissolve government in Guinea

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Guinean security forces patrol a street in Conakry, Guinea, on November 4, 2023 [Souleymane Camara/Reuters]

The military says it will appoint a new government, but has not indicated when that would be.

The military in Guinea, which seized power more than two years ago, has dissolved the interim government in the West African nation and said it will appoint a new administration.

Military leaders released a video statement late on Monday to say that directors of cabinet, secretary generals and their deputies would be in charge until a new government was formed. The government has been in office since July 2022.

The presidency’s secretary-general, Amara Camara, was flanked by other military officials and several armed and masked soldiers in the pre-recorded video when he delivered the unexpected news.

It is still unclear how the dissolution, which Camara did not provide a reason for, would immediately affect the country or who the senior members of a new government would be.

The military took power in a coup in September 2021 after the country’s first democratically elected president, Alpha Conde, was deposed.

Under international pressure, military leader Colonel Mamady Doumbouya had promised to hand the reins of government back to elected civilians by the end of 2024.

The country’s special forces led the putsch after a long period of political tension in Guinea, which was first spurred by Conde’s highly controversial attempt for a third presidential term in 2020.

The former president had emerged victorious in an election after pushing through a new constitution in March 2020 that allowed him to ignore the country’s two-term limit for presidency and run for a third term.

Dozens of people had been killed at the time during demonstrations against a third term for Conde after clashes with security forces. Hundreds more were arrested.

The government had also arrested several prominent opposition members for their alleged role in inciting and abetting electoral violence in Guinea.

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the region’s main economic and political bloc, has been pressuring the military to hold elections and restore civilian rule.

The military leaders in Guinea and the ECOWAS had agreed on a 24-month transition timeline in October 2022.

SOURCE: AL JAZEERA AND NEWS AGENCIES

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