AU denounces "repression" in Guinea, urges dialogue

Dakar- Senegal (PANA) -- The African Union (AU) Commission Chairperson, Alpha Oumar Konaré, has condemned the "repression of demonstrators," which has resulted in the death of a number of people and arrest of others in Guinea.
An AU Commission statement Tuesday quoted him as having expressed concern over the situation in that country where security forces have clashed with thousands of demonstrators, aggravating a two-week general strike called by labour unions.
The unions are demanding economic and political reforms including the resignation of ailing President Lansana Conte.
"The Commission Chairperson has called on the Guinean authorities and all the stakeholders to show restraint.
He further urges Guinean authorities to immediately set up an independent enquiry to determine responsibility and sanction the authors of the violence, which Guinea has been facing for several days," the AU statement said.
Konare stressed that "the deep crisis" could only be settled through dialogue and consultation among all the stakeholders, and called for the immediate and unconditional release of all detainees, particularly political and union officials.
The statement said the AU chief had begun consultations with African leaders on how to find a lasting solution to the Guinea crisis.
He urged Guinean authorities to support mediation efforts by ECOWAS and to welcome a delegation, being sent by the sub-regional grouping to Conakry.

23 january 2007 12:47:00

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