Guinea cops break up peaceful rally

2011-12-05 17:12

Conakry - Several people were injured when Guinean security forces broke up a meeting of supporters of former prime minister Lansana Kouyate in the east of the country, his party said on Monday.

Members of the Party for the Hope of National Development (PEDN) had gathered in Kankan, 600km east of the capital for the rally held in honour of Kouyate on Sunday, said party secretary general Traore Zalikatou Diallo.

"Thousands of our party's supporters were prevented from gathering... our supporters were sprayed with tear gas and beaten up" by security forces, leaving many injured, she said.

Guinean journalists who were present confirmed this information. Police, however, would not comment.

Kouyate formed an alliance with President Alpha Conde in run-off elections at the end of 2010 which saw the latter become the west African nation's first democratically elected leader since independence in 1958.

However the two later parted ways due to "personality differences".

Both originate from Upper-Guinea and share the country's influential Mandinke electorate.