Leader Ousted, Nation Is Now a Drug Haven
By Adam Nossiter, The New York Times
01 November 2012
BISSAU, Guinea-Bissau — When the army ousted the president here just months before his term was to expire, a thirst for power by the officer corps did not fully explain the offensive. But a sizable increase in drug trafficking in this troubled country since the military took over has raised suspicions that the president’s sudden removal was what amounted to a cocaine coup.
The military brass here has long been associated with drug trafficking, but the coup last spring means soldiers now control the drug racket and the country itself, turning Guinea-Bissau in the eyes of some international counternarcotics experts into a nation where illegal drugs are sanctioned at the top.
“They are probably the worst narco-state that’s out there on the continent,” said a senior Drug Enforcement Administration official in Washington, who spoke on the condition of anonymity so as not to jeopardize his work in the region. “They are a major problem.” (read more)
UN report: Guinea-Bissau forces abducted and tortured opposition leaders after coup attempt.
Peter James Spielmann, The Associated Press
28 November 2012
Guinea-Bissau’s military and intelligence forces abducted and tortured two opposition leaders after a failed attempt to overthrow the ruling junta last month, according to a United Nations report released Wednesday.
The report to the Security Council by U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon said that after the failure of the Oct. 21 counter-coup, Guinea-Bissau’s military and intelligence services ran house-to-house searches for suspects and “abducted and tortured” opposition leaders Iancuba Djola N’djai and Sivestre Alves.
Guinea-Bissau’s military government subsequently denounced the beatings and denied any involvement, Ban noted. (read more)
African Union calls for international involvement in coup-plagued Guinea Bissau
03 November 2012
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia – The African Union (AU) has called for international involvement in the coup-troubled Guinea Bissau after warning that it would take concrete measures on the situation after receiving a comprehensive report. The Peace and Security Council (PSC), which met in Addis Ababa Friday, called for international involvement in Guinea Bissau after the latest coup attempt, which occurred on 21 October, when a military unit attacked an air force base.Although the AU did not specify action it intended to take, the continental organ warned it would take the concrete measures after receiving a report on the situation from the AU Commission President, on the attack on Bissalanca air force. (read more)
Guinea Bissau: Beatings and intimidation create a climate of fear
October 25, 2012
A climate of fear has fallen over Guinea Bissau since Tuesday when two government critics were badly beaten and soldiers conducted searches for people they suspect were involved in an attack on a military barracks early Sunday.The government claims the attack on the barracks of an elite army unit based on the outskirts of the capital, Bissau, was an attempted coup by supporters of the previous Prime Minister Carlos Gomez Júnior, who was himself ousted by a coup in April this year.“It is wholly unacceptable that civilians are being terrorised because they happen to live in an area where the army suspects that supporters of the former government are hiding,” said Noel Kututwa, Amnesty International’s southern Africa director. (read more)
Guinea Bissau: Guebuza Committed to Peace in Guinea-Bissau
16 October 2012
Maputo — Mozambican President Armando Guebuza, speaking in his capacity as chairperson of the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries (CPLP), declared in Brussels on Monday that he is willing to continue working to establish a climate of peace in Guinea-Bissau.He was speaking at a meeting with CPLP ambassadors in the Belgian capital on the eve of the European Development Days (EDD), a two day event due to begin on Tuesday. The crisis in Guinea-Bissau, where the legitimate government was deposed in a military coup in April, was the main theme of the meeting.”We stand beside the people of Guinea-Bissau, and we shall continue to do all in our power so that the difficulties they face today may be overcome, and they return to living in peace”, Guebuza said. (read more)
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