The justice minister said gunmen stormed the capital’s main prison and freed Camara. Heavy gunshots were reported in Conakry, with the Justice Ministry saying the borders were shuttered.
Gunmen stormed the main prison in the Conakry capital of Guinea on Saturday, freeing 2008 coup leader Moussa “Dadis” Camara, the justice minister said.
The center of Guinea’s capital city of Conakry was sealed off on Saturday, witnesses said, as gunfire rang out near the administrative heart of the city.
Justice Minister Charles Alphonse Wright told Radio Fim FM several hours after the reported gunfight that others were also able to escape alongside Camara, including military figures Claude Pivi and Blaise Goumou. The duo were also being tried alongside Camara.
“We will find them. And those responsible will be held accountable,” Wright told local Radio Fim FM.
What do we know about the shooting in Guinea?
Military vehicles and special forces were seen on the streets, local witnesses told the Reuters news agency, adding that shots were first heard around 4 a.m. local time (0400 GMT).
“There is gunfire from both automatic and weapons of war in Kaloum,” a witness from the area who preferred to remain anonymous told the French AFP news agency.
Kaloum is the political and administrative heart of the seaside city of Conakry, where the presidential palace and other official administrative buildings are located. It is also where Moussa Dadis Camara, the former head of the 2008 military junta, is imprisoned alongside other soldiers.
Camara is on trial for a 2009 massacre which left at least 157 people killed. Tens of thousands had gathered at Conakry’s stadium to dissuade him from running for president when soldiers, police and militia members opened fire at them.
Guinea is among eight western or central African countries that have witnessed a military coup in the past three years.
rmt/sms (AFP, Reuters)