A legitimate civilian government, economic improvement and an army that has lost credibility are an opportunity for Guinea-Bissau. Regional and international partners meeting in Brussels on 25 March should commit to finance security sector reform to help the small state move beyond its history of military coups.
In new sign of rising political instability, President Sissoco Embaló dissolved parliament in bid to strengthen his hand amid tensions within ruling coalition. Embaló 16 May dissolved parliament, accusing MPs of “corruption, harmful administration and embezzlement”; same day said “persistent and unresolvable” differences between National Assembly and other govt branches created “space for guerrilla politics and plotting” and scheduled early parliamentary elections for 18 Dec. After Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) new stabilisation mission late April arrived in Guinea-Bissau, head of former ruling African Party for the Independence of Guinea and Cape Verde (PAIGC), Domingos Simões Pereira, 4 May suggested deployment amounts to “invasion”, lamented ECOWAS bought into Embaló’s narrative of coup plot following early Feb attack on govt palace.
Guinea-Bissau’s elections are an important first step, but to address its economic and political fragility, the country needs strong international help, as well as political and military will for reform.
On 12 April 2012 a military uprising ousted former prime minister Carlos Gomes Júnior just as he was about to compete in a run-off presidential election that he was poised to win. Gabriela Keseberg Dávalos, Crisis Group's Senior Communications Officer, and Vincent Foucher, West Africa Senior Analyst, were in Bissau to examine the current situation in the country, the reasons for the overthrow and the priorities of the new transitional government.
International actors need to commit to a common strategy to help coup-plagued Guinea-Bissau implement the security, justice and electoral reforms it needs to escape its status as a link in drug trafficking to Europe.
On 12 April 2012, a military uprising ousted former prime minister Carlos Gomes Júnior just as he was about to compete in a run-off presidential election that he was poised to win. Crisis Group's Gabriela Keseberg Dávalos, Senior Communications Officer, and Vincent Foucher, West Africa Senior Analyst, were in Bissau to examine the current situation in the country.
West-African state Guinea-Bissau, known for its chronic instability, went to the polls on Sunday 18 March 2012. Early figures from some polling stations in the capital Bissau showed former prime minister and ruling party candidate Carlos Gomes Junior far ahead. Now five candidates have called for the cancellation of the polls, due to “massive rigging”. Vincent Foucher, Crisis Group’s West Africa Senior Analyst, looks at current developments.
The West African country Guinea-Bissau has been relatively stable since the political and military turmoil of 2010. But crucial political, military and judicial developments still lie ahead of this year's presidential elections. We talked to Vincent Foucher, Crisis Group's Senior Analyst for West Africa, about the future of Guinea-Bissau.
The ability of the Bissau-Guinean authorities to withstand the 26 December 2011 coup attempt bears witness to the improvements since the previous military turmoil of 1 April 2010, but crucial political, military and judicial developments still lie ahead as the country prepares for presidential elections in March and parliamentary polls later this year.
Vincent Foucher, analyste principal de Crisis Group pour la Guinée-Bissau, examine la situation politique actuelle du pays après le retour des militaires sur la scène politique en avril 2010, le rôle de l’Angola, et les mesures à envisager au niveau national et régional afin d’éviter un blocage.