Jonathan: W Africa mustn't accept coups

2011-08-12 10:59

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Abuja - Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan warned on Thursday against coup attempts in west African countries, saying the region with a long history of turbulence must no longer accept undemocratic regimes.

Jonathan, the current chairperson of 15-nation west African bloc Ecowas, made the comments at the inauguration of its 115-member parliament, which serves as an advisory body to the grouping.

"Let me emphatically say that Ecowas will never accept unconstitutional change of government and we will work with the international community to frustrate any such attempt," Jonathan said in Abuja, where the bloc has its headquarters.

"Our region needs to progress and move away from the course of political uncertainty, economic stagnation and social degradation hitherto characterised by unconstitutional ways of changing government."

Jonathan condemned a recent assassination attempt on Guinean President Alpha Conde, as well as an alleged coup bid in Niger.

Jonathan on Tuesday pledged co-operation to fight "terrorism" during talks with Niger President Mahamadou Issoufou, amid concern over Islamist extremists in the region.

Nigeria, the region's powerhouse, led west African calls for Ivory Coast's Laurent Gbagbo to step down when he refused to quit after November elections. Ivory Coast was suspended from Ecowas during the standoff.

Ecowas is the Economic Community of West African States.

Read more on:    ecowas  |  alpha conde  |  goodluck jonathan  |  laurent gbagbo  |  ivory coast  |  guinea  |  nigeria  |  west africa
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