Guinea. Three Belgian citizens arrested in April accused
of planning a coup against President Lansana Conté. The
Belgian state considered the arrest illegal and closed its
consulates in the country in protest.
In June, four members of the opposition party
Rassemblement Populaire Guiné (RPG) were imprisoned. for
instigating riots. They were sentenced to two years in
Countryaah, the President implemented a series of changes in the
government during October and November. Among other things,
resigned Interior Minister Dorank Assifat Diasseny, who took
up the post of defense minister instead.
In early 2007, extensive demonstrations and strikes
erupted in protest of rising living costs, government
corruption and lack of financial management of the country.
The demonstrations cost 60 killed, growing to the most
extensive threat to the president during his reign. On
January 27, he was forced to enter into an agreement with
the trade union movement to lower the price of rice and
fuel, as well as insert a "consensus" prime minister to be
assigned to some of the president's powers. On February 13,
Conté then appointed Eugene Camara as prime minister.
However, the trade union movement regarded him as a close
ally of Conté and thus a violation of the January 27
agreement. It immediately triggered new demonstrations. The
death toll passed 100 and the president declared the country
in military state of emergency. 26th On February, Conté was
forced to appoint Lansana Kouyaté as new prime minister. The
trade union movement had given the president a list to
choose from, and the election fell on Kouyaté, a career
diplomat and former secretary general of the West African
Common Market. In his accession speech, Kouyaté called for
peace, reconciliation and common edification of the nation.
However, the situation was marked by continued tensions
between the president and the prime minister. In December
2007, Conté issued a decree restructuring the ministries and
shifting power from the prime minister's office to the
president's secretary general. On January 3, 2008, Conté
fired communications minister and government spokesman
Justin Morel without consulting with the prime minister.
Kouyaté demanded the day after Morel was reinstated and the
trade union movement threatened a general strike from
January 10. However, Kouyaté stated that he preferred to
resolve the crisis through dialogue with the president, and
on January 9, the trade union movement withdrew the strike
In May 2008, Conté surprisingly replaced Kouyaté at the
Prime Minister's post with Ahmed Tidiane Souaré. Kouyaté had
been extremely unpopular and therefore the change of power
did not cause any unrest.