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Human Rights Commissioner calls for rejection of violence in Guinea

29.09.2011

On 27 September, violent clashes took place in Conakry, Guinea, between demonstrators and security forces. At least two people were killed, and many more injured. The demonstration was held to commemorate the massacre of 28 September 2009, when 156 people who had taken to the streets to protest against the Government of the time, were killed. The demonstration was organized by the opposition against President Alpha Condé, who came into office in a democratic election in 2010. The demonstrators accused the President of having fixed the date for parliamentary elections (29 December 2011) and, more importantly, the framework for these elections on his own and without accommodating the demands of the opposition.

The Federal Government Commissioner for Human Rights Policy and Humanitarian Aid at the Federal Foreign Office, Markus Löning, issued the following statement today (29 September) in Paris on what has been happening in Guinea:

“I very much regret that people were killed during the demonstrations in Guinea on 27 September. People’s right to express their views freely and peacefully is of fundamental importance for every democracy and must be respected by all stakeholders. The security forces are called upon to exercise a deescalating influence on the demonstrators. The demonstrators in turn also have to refrain from any violence.
What Guinea’s fledgling democracy now needs are political leaders who act constructively and jointly tackle the enormous challenges facing the country, such as national reconciliation and economic development. The parliamentary elections announced for 29 December 2011 by Guinea’s first democratically elected President, Professor Alpha Condé, are an essential requirement for the ultimate success of the transition process that Guinea has embarked upon. All political forces should commit to an open and credible dialogue in order to make these democratic elections transparent, peaceful and fair.”

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