Guinea: Junta changes course on negotiations, arbitrary arrests denounced

The ruling junta in Guinea wants "to continue negotiations for a prompt, consensual and sustainable end to the crisis", said the Foreign minister Alexandre Cece Loua. The announcement marks a change of course in respect to a statement by another top junta member, Moussa Keita, who two days ago said that the junta was pulling out of the negotiations mediated by the ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States). "We will continue collaborating with the international contact group on Guinea", added Loua, despite the junta leader Moussa Dadis Camara is still hospitalised in Morocco, where he underwent surgery after being shot a week ago by his former right-hand man Aboubacar Sidiki Diakité, alias 'Tumba'. The episode sparked renewed tension in the country, split since September between the ruling junta on one side and the opposition, unions and civil society on the other. The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and its Guinean section in a joint statement denounced "arbitrary arrests" and "punitive expeditions" carried out in Conakry by the presidential guard, gendarmes and other special services in search of 'Tumba'.