Gambian leader: Britain not involved in coup plot

2015-01-11 21:21
Yahya Jammeh (AFP)

Yahya Jammeh (AFP)

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Banjul - Gambian leader Yahya Jammeh has said Britain had no involvement with dissidents who tried to topple his government on 30 December.

In a speech on state television late on Saturday, Jammeh told members of the armed forces that "there is no evidence of British involvement in the attack on State House. There is no single Gambian dissident who came from Britain to support them" (the attackers).

He added: "I apologise to Britain, as far as the evidence gathered is concerned, there is no British Government involvement in the attack. They have Gambian dissidents there [in Britain], but none of them came here to attack us."

Jammeh, who has ruled Gambia with an iron fist for 20 years, early this month blamed unidentified foreign dissidents and "terrorists" for the assault on his presidential palace.

In his speech he warned opponents that "we will fight terror with terror, and violence with violence".

The army has launched a manhunt for two senior officers suspected of taking part in the failed coup bid.

Since the presidential guard crushed the pre-dawn attack on State House in Banjul, dozens of people have been arrested and streets in the west African port city have been constantly patrolled by troops and police.

Jammeh has led the small, narrow land of about two million people - which lies the length of the Gambia river inside Senegal and opens on to the Atlantic - since taking power in a coup in 1994 when he was just 29.

Read more on:    yahya jammeh  |  gambia  |  west africa
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