In an unexpected development, the African Union has decided to suspend Gabon in response to the recent military coup in the Central African nation. This announcement was made by the AU’s Peace and Security Council on Thursday evening, as reported by NAN.
It’s worth noting that just a few weeks ago, the AU suspended Niger Republic’s membership when the military took control of the country at the end of July. This move follows a pattern as Burkina Faso, Mali, Guinea, and Sudan have also faced suspensions since experiencing coups in their respective nations.
In Brussels, the European Union’s top diplomat, Josep Borrell, expressed strong disapproval of any forcible seizure of power in Gabon. He emphasized the importance of resolving the challenges facing Gabon through adherence to the principles of the rule of law, constitutional order, and democracy. Borrell’s statement on Thursday stressed that the country’s peace, prosperity, and regional stability hinge on these principles.
He called for a peaceful and inclusive dialogue as the preferred method for upholding the rule of law, protecting human rights, and respecting the will of the Gabonese people.
The military in Gabon took control early on Wednesday, announcing the dissolution of state institutions on state television. They cited fraudulent election results as the reason for their actions and closed the country’s borders.
Shortly before this announcement, electoral authorities had declared Ali Bongo, who had been in office since 2009, as the winner of the August 26 election. Military leaders subsequently named Brice Clotaire Oligui Nguema, the head of the Presidential Guard, as Gabon’s interim leader on Wednesday evening.