Guinea junta swears in civilian as prime minister

CONAKRY, Guinea — One of the fiercest critics of Guinea’s military leader became prime minister today, marking another step toward power being ceded to civilians after more than 50 years of strongman rule in the West African country.

Jean-Marie Dore, a veteran opposition leader in his 70s, was brutally beaten by soldiers loyal to Capt. Moussa “Dadis” Camara last year when Dore helped lead a demonstration calling for an end to military rule.

His appointment as prime minister comes less than two months after Camara was badly wounded in an assassination attempt and agreed under intense pressure to go into exile and allow elections to be held. The agreement called for a civilian to be appointed interim prime minister.

“I am committed to leading Guinea toward free, credible and transparent elections,” Dore said today, adding that the country’s military needs to be restructured in order to guarantee security.

Earlier this month, Camara agreed to stay in Burkina Faso and not return to Guinea while he recuperates after being shot in the head by his former aide-de-camp.

Camara was flown to Burkina Faso after being ejected from Morocco, where he had been undergoing medical treatment following the December assassination attempt. The country had been in limbo as many worried that factions within the army might try to make a bid for power.

Although initially popular when he seized control in a coup on Dec. 23, 2008, Camara quickly lost support when he backed away from a promise to organize elections in which he would not run.

Dore was among the tens of thousands of people who thronged the main soccer stadium in the capital in September to protest against Camara. Members of Camara’s presidential guard shot into the crowd, killing at least 156 people and raping dozens of women.

Opposition leaders were targeted by the presidential guard. Dore had his skull cracked when he was beaten by soldiers and keeps a bag with the bloody clothes he was wearing that day.

The military-led massacre gave rise to fears that Guinea — one of the few countries in the sub-region that has never had a civil war — could descend into conflict, a dangerous development that could rope in other countries and once again set this part of Africa on fire.

Talk to us

More in Local News

Cars move across Edgewater Bridge toward Everett on Tuesday, Sept. 26, 2023, in Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Edgewater Bridge redo linking Everett, Mukilteo delayed until mid-2024

The project, now with an estimated cost of $27 million, will detour West Mukilteo Boulevard foot and car traffic for a year.

Lynn Deeken, the Dean of Arts, Learning Resources & Pathways at EvCC, addresses a large gathering during the ribbon cutting ceremony of the new Cascade Learning Center on Thursday, Sept. 28, 2023, at Everett Community College in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
New EvCC learning resource center opens to students, public

Planners of the Everett Community College building hope it will encourage students to use on-campus tutoring resources.

Everett Police Chief Dan Templeman announces his retirement after 31 years of service at the Everett City Council meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Everett police chief to retire at the end of October

Chief Dan Templeman announced his retirement at Wednesday’s City Council meeting. He has been chief for nine years.

Boeing employees watch the KC-46 Pegasus delivery event  from the air stairs at Boeing on Thursday, Jan. 24, 2019 in Everett, Wa. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Boeing’s iconic Everett factory tour to resume in October

After a three-year hiatus, tours of the Boeing Company’s enormous jet assembly plant are back at Paine Field.

A memorial for a 15-year-old shot and killed last week is set up at a bus stop along Harrison Road on Wednesday, Sept. 13, 2023, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Teen boy identified in fatal shooting at Everett bus stop

Bryan Tamayo-Franco, 15, was shot at a Hardeson Road bus stop earlier this month. Police arrested two suspects.

Fatal 2-car crash closes Highway 99 in Lynnwood

Police closed off Highway 99 between 188th Street SW and 196th Street SW while they investigated.

Mike Bredstrand, who is trying to get back his job with Lake Stevens Public Works, stands in front of the department’s building on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023, in Lake Stevens, Washington. Bredstrand believes his firing in July was an unwarranted act of revenge by the city. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Lake Stevens worker was fired after getting court order against boss

The city has reportedly spent nearly $60,000 on attorney and arbitration fees related to Mike Bredstrand, who wants his job back.

Chap Grubb, founder and CEO of second-hand outdoor gear store Rerouted, stands inside his new storefront on Thursday, Sept. 21, 2023, in Gold Bar, Washington. Rerouted began as an entirely online shop that connected buyers and sellers of used gear.  (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Used outdoor gear shop Rerouted finds a niche in Gold Bar

Seeking to keep good outdoor gear out of landfills, an online reselling business has put down roots in Gold Bar.

Naval Station Everett. (Chuck Taylor / Herald file)
Everett man sentenced to 6 years for cyberstalking ex-wife

Christopher Crawford, 42, was found guilty of sending intimate photos of his ex-wife to adult websites and to colleagues in the Navy.

Most Read