CrisisWatch Guinea

Unchanged Situation

Religious figures launched new mediation initiative between interim govt and opposition; relations with ECOWAS remained tense.

Govt and opposition engaged in fragile talks as part of new mediation initiative. Govt’s General Secretary for Religious Affairs Karamo Diawara, Grand Imam of Conakry Mamadou Saliou Camara and other religious figures 5-6 March met with representatives of Forces Vives de Guinée (FVG) – large opposition coalition including outlawed National Front for the Defence of the Constitution, former President Condé’s Rally of the Guinean People and Cellou Dalein Diallo’s Union of Democratic Forces of Guinea – as part of new effort to foster dialogue with transitional govt. FVG 8 March postponed anti-govt demonstration planned for 9 March to “give negotiations a chance”. Authorities 11 March briefly detained two FVG members, including prominent civil society activist Abdoul Sacko, in capital Conakry on undisclosed charges. FVG 13 March met with PM Bernard Goumou and requested end of legal proceedings against Sacko as pre-condition for negotiations. Authorities next day ended legal proceedings against Sacko, prompting FVG to suspend demonstration scheduled for 20 March. FVG around 25 March designated six representatives to discuss prerequisites for dialogue with govt.

Govt at loggerheads with ECOWAS over detention of former ministers. Paris-based news outlet Africa Intelligence 17 March revealed series of communications 28 Feb-13 March between West African regional bloc ECOWAS’s court of justice and Conakry over continued detention of three Condé-era ministers, including former PM Ibrahima Kassory Fofana, who were arrested in April 2022 for alleged financial fraud; regional court reportedly requested defence case statement outlining officials’ situation. All three former ministers 15 March refused to appear before Economic and Financial Offenses Court in Conakry, denouncing “targeted and repressive witch hunt”; court postponed audience to 20 March, then to April.

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