Guinea: Junta bans demonstrations ahead of coup anniversary

News and Press Release
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Until new orders, public demonstrations organised by political parties and civil society groups are prohibited. The decision of the ruling military junta was read on the national radio-TV, ahead of the December 23 anniversary of the coup that took the junta to power. Political and military authorities were called to enforce the measure that bans any type of public gathering or initiative. Front pages of the Guinean media are however dedicated to the national commission set up by the junta - contested by the opposition and civil society - that yesterday issued first results of an investigation into a violent crackdown on an opposition demonstration on September 28 at the Conakry stadium: the commission confirmed the junta version of 58 dead and 32 cases of suspected rape. According to the United Nations, which is expected to release a report in the next days, and several Non-Governmental Organisations, at least 150 people were killed and 1,250 injured in the crackdown. Meanwhile, there is wide concern for the rights activist Mouktar Diallo, who was no longer allowed visitors after his transfer to the so-called "Pm3" detention centre of the national gendarmerie in Conakry; the 'Observatory for the protection of human rights defenders' in a statement denounced the arbitrary detention of Diallo, under arrest since November 26 on charges of threatening state security.