ECOWAS Suspends Guinea

Burkinabe Foreign Minister Alpha Barry has confirmed the suspension of Guinea from the West Africa Bloc ECOWAS on Wednesday after a virtual crisis summit.

The move comes after Guinean special forces led by Lieutenant Colonel Mamady Doumbouya seized power on Sunday and arrested President Alpha Conde, sparking international condemnation.

To discuss the turmoil in Guinea and find a lasting solution to the new development, the Regional bloc ECOWAS convened an extraordinary virtual summit on Wednesday.

During an extraordinary virtual summit on Wednesday, leaders from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) demanded a return to the constitutional order and the immediate release of Conde, who was arrested by special forces led by Lieutenant Colonel Mamady Doumbouya on Sunday.

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The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) will also send a mediation mission to Guinea on Thursday, Barry told reporters in Burkina Faso’s capital Ouagadougou.

The 83-year-old became the first democratically elected president in 2010 and was re-elected in 2015. But last year, Conde pushed through a constitutional change to allow himself to run for a third term, a move his opponents said was illegal. Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara also won a third term last year after changing his country’s constitution.

ECOWAS was criticised at the time by activists for remaining silent about Conde and Ouattara’s third-term bids

The move sparked mass demonstrations in which dozens of protesters were killed. Conde won the election but the political opposition maintained that the poll was a sham.

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Afterwards, Burkinabe Foreign Minister Alpha Barry said that ECOWAS would also request that the Africa Union and United Nations endorse its decision to suspend Guinea.

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