Guinea Coup: ECOWAS calls for “an immediate return to constitutional order”

 

The Economic Community of West African States ECOWAS has made a decision to suspend Guinea following the military coup in the country.

The Guardian reports that the organisation declared this after an emergency summit on Wednesday, calling for “an immediate return to constitutional order”.

Special forces headed by Lieutenant Colonel Mamady Doumbouya snatched power in the West African state on Sunday and arrested President Alpha Conde, provoking international rebuke.

Conde, 83, had come under surging fire for perceived autocracy, with dozens of resistance activists imprisoned after a violently protested election in 2020.

 

However, the putsch in Guinea has spurred fears of democratic backsliding across West Africa — where military strongmen are an increasingly common sight.

Nexus News gathered that Guinea has pulled parallels with its neighbour Mali: the Sahel state has endured two coups since August last year led by Colonel Assimi Goita, who was also a special forces commander.

 

On Wednesday, Leaders from the 15-nation Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) commenced an extraordinary video summit to debate the upheaval in Guinea.

Following the meeting, ECOWAS announced in a statement that regional leaders decided “to suspend Guinea from all ECOWAS decision-making bodies with immediate effect.”

Furthermore, the bloc mandated that Guinea’s military discharge Conde and held the coup plotters accountable for the overthrown leader’s physical safety.

According to the statement, high-level ECOWAS mission will be launched immediately.

President Alpha Condé

“The Authority will review the situation in light of developments in the Republic of Guinea and the Assessment mission report,” it said.

When confronted with an equal situation in Mali last year, ECOWAS inflicted economic sanctions on the country but lifted them after Mali’s ruling military committed to reclaiming civilian rule.

Hours after seizing power in the capital Conakry, Doumbouya materialized on television and condemned the Conde government of “endemic corruption” and of “trampling on citizens’ rights”.

He has promised to open discussions on establishing a new government, but it is not yet obvious when, or under what form, these may take place.

“The government to be installed will be that of national unity and will ensure this political transition,” Doumbouya tweeted on Tuesday.

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