Guinea : between promises of reconciliation and public expectations Spécial


Source : Météo Sahel 

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In Guinea, the military regime led by Colonel Mamadi Doumbouya has raised expectations and concerns by announcing a constitutional referendum for the year 2024. This initiative, presented as a step towards a return to constitutional order and the organization of democratic elections, was greeted with some scepticism, given the country's tense political context. The coup d'état in September 2021, which toppled President Alpha Condé, initially raised hopes of change, but recent restrictions on press freedom and Internet access have raised concerns about the direction the political transition will take.

Indeed, the growing repression of media freedom and online censorship has attracted the attention of the international community. The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Volker Türk, has expressed his concern at these measures, pointing out that they do not meet international human rights standards. Journalists have been harassed and intimidated, and several have been arrested. In addition, the authorities have blocked access to several social media sites and restricted Internet access, citing national security imperatives. In response to these restrictions, protests broke out, including a day of mobilization for press freedom. However, the security forces violently repressed these demonstrations, arresting and intimidating journalists and members of civil society. 

The deteriorating human rights situation in Guinea, as reported by the international press, has led to increased mobilization by the international community and trade unions. Human rights organizations and journalists' unions have called for the release of detained journalists, including Sekou Jamal Pendessa of the Syndicat des professionnels de la presse de Guinée (SPPG), who has been remanded in custody, and for the restoration of fundamental freedoms. According to a report by the Committee to Protect Journalists, the number of journalists incarcerated in the region increased from 31 in 2022 to 47 on December 1, 2023, highlighting the persistent challenges facing media professionals in many countries in the region.