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Civil society groups in Gabon want unconditional release of all political detainees


Civil society groups in Gabon are demanding the unconditional release of all political prisoners and kidnapped persons in the country.

An Amnesty International report published in February condemned the lack of freedom of expression in the Central African nation.

The report also cited arbitrary arrests and detentions. Gabonese civil society groups are worried about this.

“We say no to injustice, no to kidnapping, no to extra-judicial executions, no to the recklessness and indifference of administrative and political authorities, no to the brutality and cruelty of the defence, security and law and order forces’‘,said Eliane Oyougou,who is a member of the civil society group.

The committee, made up of the defenders of political detainees in Gabon, want the cases referred to international bodies. For them, the Gabonese justice system only favors government officials.

‘‘All those who are quoted where we have names, we have testimonies, those who are ready or far away engaged in these acts of barbarism will answer for their actions “,said another member, Marc Ona Essangui
This committee wants political prisoners like Bertrand Zibi, Frédéric Massavala and Pascal Oyougou released. But, the government spokesman, denies allegations of the lack of human rights.

‘‘We never said that the prisons in Libreville were palaces, we didn’t say it! And if you’re talking about arbitrary arrests, I don’t know any. If we’re talking about people who are in detention for political reasons, I don’t know any! I know of people who are in detention for threatening the stability of the state’‘,said the Gabonese government spokesperson, Alain Claude Bilie by Nzé.

The committee also hopes more light will be shed on the disappearance of Stempy Obame and Alain mbela Obiang, suspected of being close to Gabonese opposition leader ,Jean Ping.

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