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Guinea: Clashes in Conakry, one year after the coup

Guinea: Clashes in Conakry, one year after the coup
President of the National Committee for Rally and Development (CNRD) Colonel Mamady...   -  
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JOHN WESSELS/AFP or licensors -

Guinea

A year after the coup d'état that brought the military to power, sporadic clashes between protesters and Guinean security forces erupted on Monday in the partially paralysed suburbs of Conakry, an AFP reporter noted.

On September 5, 2021, Colonel Mamady Doumbouya and his special forces overthrew the head of state Alpha Conde, before being invested, as president. The junta promised to hand over power to elected civilians within three years.

The National Front for the Defence of the Constitution (FNDC), a coalition of parties, trade unions and civil society organisations, joined by what remains of the opposition, called for demonstrations on Monday to demand a quicker return to constitutional order and to denounce the seizure of power, the repression of protests and the manipulation of justice.

Despite the junta's ban on all rallies since May and the dissolution of the FNDC decreed by the authorities in August, scattered demonstrations took place in the capital's suburbs, such as Sonfonia, Wanindara, Bambeto and Hamdallaye. In Cosa, a dozen young people were arrested, a journalist from AFP noted.

In these places, shops were closed and traffic paralysed. The demonstrators tried to erect barricades, which were quickly dismantled by the police, with discreet army reinforcements in places.

Dozens of police and gendarmerie pick-ups were also parked on the Route Le Prince, an axis crossing the suburbs of the capital and a frequent scene of confrontations in Conakry.

On Sunday night and early Monday, sporadic clashes also took place in Dabondy, in the capital's inner suburbs, without causing any injuries.

On Monday evening, a festive concert was announced in the city centre, on the esplanade of the People's Palace, to celebrate the arrival in power of the military a year ago.

After having orchestrated for months the mobilization against a third presidential term of Alpha Conde (2010-2021), the FNDC now carries the voice of protest against the junta, the opposition being considerably weakened.

Five people were killed during days of protest at the end of July, and two on 17 August.

Two of the FNDC leaders, Oumar Sylla alias Foniké Mangué and Ibrahima Diallo, have been detained since the end of July protests.

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