- The Guinean President, Lansana Conté, has again deferred talks with mutinous soldiers scheduled to take place on Monday.
It was the second time that Mr Conte pushed the talks, which aim to nail weeks of bloody military riots and dismissal of military commanders of the impoverished West African county.
No official reasons have been advanced for the deferment. But according to close government sources, the talks will take place on Tuesday. He was said to be buying time to allow the newly appointed military officers to settle down.
It was reported that Mr Conté’s travel to his home village at the weekend might have resulted to the deferment of the Saturday talks. Some reports said President Conte will surely meet rioting soldiers alongside the new government authorities.
Aged 72, Guinea’s bed-ridden diabetic President has been ruling on a sick bed for years. He had been in power since 1984.
Guinean soldiers had been striking over several years of salary arrears. The mutiny sparked the dismissal of the country’s 8 top military officers, including the Defence Minister and Army Chief of Staff, Arafan Camara and Kerfala Camara, respectively. The development filled joy among striking soldiers.
However, their joy was short-lived by President Conté’s refusal to honour his promise to meet them. In protest, they went on the rampage, looting food in warehouses and military equipment.
Guinean soldiers also blamed had been on the throat of the government to compensate the victims of peacekeeping mission in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea-Bissau some years ago.
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