Post-election violence in Guinea that erupted in the aftermath of the October 18 presidential election claimed 21 lives, including members of the security forces, national television said on Monday, citing the government, which had so far reports a record of ten killed.
“The Guinean government has indicated that 21 people have been killed since Monday (October 19) in the post-election violence, including law enforcement officers,” said the RTG newspaper presenter. The opposition for its part evokes a death toll of at least 27.
In addition, the atmosphere remained tense Monday in the Guinean capital Conakry, residents trying to recover from the post-election violence that followed the contested re-election of outgoing President Alpha Condé, while international mediation continues. The call to demonstrate against a third term of President Condé, launched by the National Front for the Defense of the Constitution (FNDC), was little or not followed, many residents saying they feared for their safety, noted AFP journalists.
Along the Fidel Castro highway, which leads from the city center to the airport through neighborhoods known to be pro-power, most shops have remained closed. A few markets were open for basic necessities, but the crowds were not there. Further north, in the large suburb favorable to the opposition, police, gendarmes and soldiers, some of them aboard pick-ups, were present in force, as for several days.
Excessive use of force
Shots were heard in particular in neighborhoods such as Cosa and Sonfonia, without it being known whether they caused deaths or injuries. Wanindara, one of the strongholds of the opposition, still bore the scars of the clashes of the past few days: the carcasses of two burnt trucks, burnt tires, stones littering the ground and looted buildings. “The young people from there and those from here, that is to say between RPG (the ruling party) and the UFDG (opposition), these are the two groups that clash”, explained Mohamed. Saliou Camara, a resident whose house was set on fire.
“The house you see there is my daddy’s. This is where they attacked. They started doing anything. In every room, everything they needed, they took it, everything. Afterwards, finally, they set fire to it, ”he added, without specifying who was responsible. “No one could save even a pair of shoes,” confirmed another resident, Mohamed Camara, walking through the rubble of his house.
According to Amnesty International, the security forces have used excessive force for the past week, firing live ammunition at demonstrators. The NGO also condemned the cuts to the internet, access to which was still very difficult on Monday according to AFP journalists.
United Nations envoys to the rescue
Emissaries from the UN, the African Union (AU) and the Community of West African States (ECOWAS), who arrived in Guinea on Sunday, continued their mediation efforts on Monday by meeting with several ministers, the electoral commission and the diplomatic corps, according to an ECOWAS official in Conakry.
The leader of the opposition, Cellou Dalein Diallo, who proclaimed himself the winner the day after the election on October 18, finally agreed to meet the mediators at his home, where he claims to be “kidnapped” for several days. He had initially demanded that the meeting take place in his offices, which he said was ransacked by the police. It started shortly before 6.30 p.m. (GMT and local), according to ECOWAS.
Mr. Diallo, credited with 33.5% of the votes by the Céni, against 59.5% for Alpha Condé, has repeatedly called on his supporters to continue the fight as long as his victory is not recognized. He also confirmed his intention to lodge an appeal with the Constitutional Court. “Even if we already know what to expect, we’ll do it anyway. For this we have eight clear days from the proclamation of the provisional results, ”he said, without further details.
Original article by : www.leparisien.fr