Coup Leaders in Guinea Start Releasing Political Prisoners

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The Guinean Ministry of Justice has agreed to release 79 people arrested on political grounds on the request of the military coup leaders, Guinean media reported.

Guinean President Alpha Conde was removed from power by a group of military officers led by Mamady Doumbouya past Sunday. They vowed to release all those arrested because of their opposition to the Conde regime.

The first group of 79 civilian prisoners was released on Tuesday night, the Guinee News outlet reported.

“The commission that has been set up at the level of the Justice Ministry will continue to work, especially concerning the military. Today, we have only focused on civilians. We will ensure that the soldiers who are in detention, some of whom are in Siguiri, others in Kankan, are free… We will ensure that they are released in line with the decision that has been taken by the new authorities,” a lawyer for the opposition was quoted as saying.

Conde, 83, had been in power since 2010 and entered his third term after winning last year’s election, which sparked nationwide protests. The controversy revolved around his move to amend the constitution to allow himself a third term in office, which was decided through a national referendum, but contested by the opposition.

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