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Gabon coup soldiers arrested, internet off but Libreville calm


Reports from Gabon indicate that the officers behind an apparent coup attempt on early Monday morning have been arrested.

Minister of communication told French broadcaster, RFI that mutineers have been arrested by GIGN units (elite tactical units), the situation is under control and order was being reestablished.

Led by one Lieutenant Kelly Ondo Obiang who led a takeover of the national radio, the soldiers said they had taken over in order to restore democracy in the Central African nation.

The Gabon 5: How soldiers attempted to overthrow a government Under the banner of the Patriotic Movement of the Defense and Security Forces of Gabon, the leader said the most recent Bongo national address “reinforced doubts about the president’s ability to continue to carry out the responsibilities of his office.”

An online freedom group, Internet Without Borders: which fights for digital rights, against digital repression and oppression, confirmed that there was an internet blackout in the wake of the move.

#Gabon Our member in Libreville reports a complete Internet Shutdown, following the ongoing coup attempt. More soon #Keepiton

— Internet_SF (@Internet_SF) January 7, 2019

Reports also indicate that the signal for the national radio had been cut after the address. The military is also said to have fired tear gas at the premises to disperse people who apparently were in support of the attempted coup.

Reuters witness, however, reports that much of the capital, Libreville, remained calm.

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