Senegal urges Gambia - help end rebellion

2011-08-17 22:45
Banjul - Senegalese President Abdulaye Wade has called on his Gambian counterpart help him end the rebellion in Senegal's Casamance province, which authorities say uses Gambia as a base from which to launch attacks.

Wade was speaking on a state visit to President Yahya Jammeh of Gambia, a sliver of land engulfed by Senegal.

A low-level rebellion has simmered in Casamance for years and occasionally the rebels kill Senegalese troops in ambushes south of the Gambia river.

The Senegalese government has said that it is ready for talks, but there are several factions within the Casamance MFDC rebel movement, complicating the process.

"I have done my part to end the crisis in Casamance but to no avail. Senegal and Gambia are one people and that is why I want my brother President Jammeh to intervene so that there will be peace in Casamance," Wade said late on Tuesday.

"Some of the rebels who have already laid down their weapons in Casamance want to engage in projects but because of the crisis they cannot do so. So I want your intervention to bring peace in Casamance," he added, giving no further details.

Casamance, which lies in between Gambia to the north and Guinea-Bissau to the south, is known for its pristine white sandy beaches that were once a prime tourism destination.

The conflict there was thrown into the spotlight in January, when Nigerian authorities seized an Iranian arms shipment bound for Gambia in circumstances that many thought implicated the Casamance rebels.

Gambia and Senegal cut ties with Iran over it and the incident also hurt relations between the two neighbours.

However, Jammeh assured Wade of his support.

"Solving the crisis in Casamance is in the best interest of the two countries. Gambia will never be a safe haven for Senegalese dissidents," Jammeh said.

Senegal has been largely spared the violence and military interference that has plagued politics in much of West Africa, although Wade is likely to face violent street protests ahead of elections in 2012.

Read more on:    yahya jammeh  |  senegal  |  gambia  |  west africa

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Amazing solar inventions!

Solar power is lighting up the world, and not just on rooftops anymore.



Plastic on your plate
Prince George the green prince?
Lean, green, drifiting machine
One man's $1 million vision for an eco Africa

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts

There is a tendency to get too caught up in group dynamics and high expectations and ideals, that your own personal needs more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.