JUST IN: GUINEAN ARMY SPECIAL FORCE STAGE COUP D’ETAT
■ Early morning of September 5, media reports monitored by SUNBIGHT MEDIA established that there was a heavy gunfire in the Kaloum area of Conakry where the Guinea Presidential Palace is located.
The elite unit of the Guinean Army, ‘Groupement des forces Spéciales’ claimed on state television that they had dissolved the West African nation’s government and constitution and closed all land and air borders.
The coup d’etat is led by Colonel Mamady Doumbouya, who appeared on state television draped in Guinea’s national flag and surrounded by eight other armed soldiers, saying his group planned to form a transitional government and would give further details later.
Doumbouya is described as a former legionnaire of the French army who returned to the country in 2018.
However, the defence ministry said an attack on the presidential palace in Conakry had been repelled.
The whereabouts of Guinean President Alpha Conde is unclear at the moment.
Conde won a third term in October after changing the constitution to allow him to stand again, despite violent protests from the opposition, raising concerns of further political upheavals in the region.
Critics say the government has used restrictive criminal laws to discourage dissent, while ethnic divisions and endemic graft have sharpened political rivalries.●