ECOWAS delegation in Guinea for talks with military
Updated 23:04, 10-Sep-2021

A delegation from West Africa's main political and economic bloc, the Economic Community for Western African States (ECOWAS), arrived in Conakry, the capital of Guinea, on Friday, two days after it suspended the country's membership in response to a military coup that removed President Alpha Conde.

The high-level diplomatic mission, led by its Commission President Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, Ghana's Foreign Affairs Minister Shirley Ayorkor Botchway and Burkina Faso Foreign Minister Alpha Barry, is expected to push for the immediate release of Conde.

The envoys will push the junta to appoint a "credible" civilian prime minister as soon as possible to help guide Guinea back towards constitutional order, Reuters reported citing a high-ranking regional official on Thursday.

Meanwhile, the military junta said on Thursday that it has ordered the central bank and other banks to freeze all government accounts.

The banking freeze was aimed at "securing state assets", a junta spokesman announced on the national broadcaster. "This includes public administrative and commercial establishments in all ministries and the presidency, presidential programs and projects, members of the outgoing government as well as senior officials and administrators of state financial institutions," the spokesman said.

Stating that it has endorsed the decision by ECOWAS, the AU peace and security council has called on the UN Security Council to endorse the communique of ECOWAS by which the bloc has suspended Guinea's membership. 

It has also called on the Chairperson of the AU Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat to engage all stakeholders in the region on the situation. 

On Sunday, Mamady Doumbouya, a lieutenant colonel, announced that his forces arrested Conde and dissolved the government and national institutions. 

The coup in Guinea sparked broad diplomatic condemnation, including by the United Nations and the African Union. It was the fourth in 13 months in West and Central Africa, raising concerns among observers over a proliferation of military-led governments in the region.

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