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Gabon: Angola and Congo condemn coup d'état and want extraordinary ECCAS summit

This Thursday, the Presidents of Angola and Congo strongly condemned the coup d'état in Gabon and called for respect for the physical integrity of Ali Bongo and his family, as well as that of senior entities in State institutions. Furthermore, the need to hold an extraordinary summit of the Economic Community of Central African States (CEEAC) was also highlighted.

: Facebook do CIPRA
Facebook do CIPRA  

The position is contained in a statement distributed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, about a short working visit that the President of the Republic, João Lourenço, made to the neighboring Republic of Congo, at the invitation of his counterpart, Dennis Sassou N'Guesso.

The note highlighted the need to hold an extraordinary summit of the Economic Community of Central African States (CEEAC)​, to provide the organization with leadership, "in order to avoid a legal vacuum and guarantee the continuity of its activities, having taking into account the events that occurred in the Gabonese Republic".

"The two heads of state strongly condemned the seizure of power by force, having called for respect for the physical integrity of His Excellency President Ali Bongo Odimba and his family, as well as the senior entities of State institutions", highlights the statement.

According to the document, the two Presidents also urged "all actors to prioritize political dialogue, as a way of preserving the peace, unity and serenity of the Gabonese people".

On Wednesday, a group of military personnel announced that they had taken power in Gabon, shortly after the electoral commission declared Ali Bongo's victory in the presidential and legislative elections on the 26th, which the opposition considered fraudulent.

The coup plotters claimed that the scrutiny was not transparent, credible or inclusive and accused the Gabonese Government of governing in an "irresponsible and unpredictable" manner, thus damaging "social cohesion".

At the end of the day on Wednesday, the leaders of the coup d'état announced the appointment of General Brice Oligui Nguema, commander of the country's Republican Guard, responsible for the security of the head of state himself, as the new "transitional president".

This is not the first coup d'état faced by Ali Bongo, whose family has held power since 1967.

Bongo suffered an attempted coup in January 2019, repressed on the same day, when he was in Morocco recovering from an illness.

The coup d'état in Gabon - one of sub-Saharan Africa's oil powers - is the second to occur in just over a month on the continent, after the army took power in Niger on 26 July.

Gabon now joins the list of countries that have had successful coups d'état in the last three years: Mali (August 2020 and May 2021), Guinea-Conakry (September 2021), Sudan (October 2021) and Burkina Faso (January and September 2022).

The statement highlights that João Lourenço and Dennis Sassou N'Guesso highlighted the excellent historical, friendly and cooperative relations that exist between the Republic of Congo and Angola, deciding to maintain regular consultations on issues of common interest, contributing to the preservation of peace in the sub-region.

The two Presidents met in the city of Oyo, in the center of the Republic of Congo, in the district of Cuvete, which is more than 400 kilometers from Brazzaville, the country's capital, which shares a common border of more than 200 kilometers with Angola.


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