Article written

  • on 07.10.2009
  • at 04:00 PM
  • by Staff

Guinea: Where has my corpse gone? 0


The stadium massacre executed by the special forces of the Guinean army on the 28 September caused the death of many innocent people. But we will never know the real number of killed people. The power said they were 57, but the UN and numerous NGOs say that they were more than 150.

The Guinean organization for human and citizens rights’ President said that the number of forces used could not have led to a bigger amount of deaths. But authorities have done their best to minimize the official number. It is no coincidence that bodies disappeared from mortuaries, put on a van to an unknown destination.

Relatives of people who disappeared had no news from their loved-ones and they could not identify them among the bodies exposed in the mosque’s enclosure of the Roi Fayçal of Donka, where they were invited to identify bodies and take them away.

Because of the impossibility to find the bodies and the presence of the army, young people rebelled. They got angry with policemen and imams, who were thrown stones at. As they were the minority, police forces were not able to control the situation. The Islamic Alliance Secretary risked a lynching, while among threats and torn clothes other imams were in danger too.

Due to the heat and dampness, which are very high in Conakry at this time of year, decomposing bodies have been buried so quickly that on Friday functions were suspended in the mosques.

However, even though Islamic faith is rated 80% in the country, the believers have always had a limited trust in Muslim religious leaders.

The exploitation of religion and fear for political purposes has made religious people unconditionally serve dictators who have led the country since independence, sacrificing oxen and organizing coral reading of the Koran to keep the power in their hands.

The CEDEAO’s decision to appoint Burkina Faso’s President Blaise Campaoré as mediator to promote dialogue between Dadis Camara’s junta and the opposition party has been deeply criticized by civil society for many reasons. Since his coupe d’état in Burkina 22 years ago, Campaoré embodies everything Guineans do not want in their country.

Accusations on the Burkinabé President go from human rights violation to interferences in the numerous crises that have destabilised the region. On an internal level, his responsibilities in the ex Burkinabé President Thomas Sankara, the journalist Bernard Zongo and other Burkinabé personalities’ deaths have never been ascertained.

He has been suspected of a dubious relationships with Charles Taylor of Liberia. Supported by Colonel Gheddafi their tandem would have sustained both Sierra Leone and the Ivory Coast’s rebels actively.

The CEDEAO’s role causes mistrust too. It is a club for heads of State, but some of them were not elected transparently, in Senegal, Nigeria, Togo, Niger, Gambia for example, where populations’ was not respected.

Just after the general public’s attention declines they will find a way to include Captain Moussa Dadis Camara.

In the end, the way Campaoré has been called is not convincing. CEDEAO has thought it was neither necessary to consult civil society nor the Guinean opposition parties. The internationally recognised Alpha Oumar Konaré, Kofi Annan and monsignor Robert Sarah, Archbishop of Conakry would have been more opportune choices.

More information about the Guinean situation on the Human Rights Watch web site

By Abdoulaye Bah for Afronline

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Direttore Responsabile Giuseppe Frangi