Tuesday, December 23, 2008

[Guinean news] Reported coup in Guinea following Conté's death

9:12 AM EST -- 2:12 PM Guinean time

The BBC is reporting that there has been an army coup in Guinea following the death yesterday of the head of state Gen. Lansana Conté. An army officer told state radio that the constitution had been suspended, the government dissolved and ministers rounded up 'to guarantee their security.'

The prime minister rejected the coup and insisted that the government 'continues to function as it should.' The National Assembly president, who constitutionally, would become acting president of the Republic, said he did not think the military was behind the attempted rebellion.

Shortly after the prime minister's remarks, the Associated Press reported a phalanx of tanks and armed soldiers heading toward the head of government's office.

The BBC notes that residents of Conakry are nervous about the transition of power, especially in the face of longstanding reports of ethnic divisions within the army.

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