Annual Report: Guinea 2010

May 28, 2010

Annual Report: Guinea 2010

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In October, the UN Secretary-General established an International Commission of Inquiry (ICI), endorsed by the AU and ECOWAS, to investigate the grave human rights violations, including rape, committed by Guinean security forces in September. In December, the ICI submitted its report to the UN Secretary- General. The report was not officially made public. The ICI found that it was reasonable to conclude that the crimes committed on 28 September and in the immediate aftermath may constitute crimes against humanity. It also concluded that there were sufficient grounds to attribute criminal responsibility to some individuals, including President Camara; commander Moussa Tiégboro Camara, Minister of the Special Services responsible for combating drug trafficking and organized crime; and Lieutenant Aboubacar Chérif Diakité, the President's aide-de-camp and commander of his personal bodyguards.

In October, the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) launched a preliminary examination to determine whether the violations of 28 September fell within the court's jurisdiction. The same month the junta set up a national commission of inquiry, which was boycotted by local civil society organizations.

Torture and other ill-treatment

Torture and other ill-treatment, including rape, sustained beatings and stabbings, were routinely committed by the security forces. Detainees were also held incommunicado at secret locations.

  • Soldiers arrested in January (see below) were beaten upon their arrival in the military barracks on Kassa Island. They were undressed and were forced to lie down with their hands tied behind their back, and then trampled and beaten.
  • People arrested after the September stadium massacre were tortured in secret detention. People searching for the bodies of their relatives or friends were arrested and beaten in military camps.

Violence against women

Sexual violence, including rape, was prevalent, especially after 28 September.

  • Dozens of women told Amnesty International that they had been raped in public on 28 September in the stadium by soldiers, including the Presidential Guard. Medical records from Conakry's Donka hospital indicated that at least 32 women protesters were raped. Several women who were arrested and transferred to a health centre after they had been raped were subsequently re-arrested. They were then held for five days, drugged and again raped by security forces.
  • The body of a woman arrested on 28 September was returned to her family a few days later showing signs of sexual violence as well as burn marks from an iron.
  • At least two women who testified before the ICI received death threats after the departure of the UN delegation in early December.

Human rights defenders

Well-established civil society groups, including the Guinean Human Rights Organization (Organisation Guinéenne des droits de l'homme, OGDH) and the National Council of Civil Society Organizations, continued to work for human rights, despite the risks, threats and intimidation.

Following the 28 September events, the OGDH was regularly attacked on the national radio and television.

  • Mouctar Diallo, Vice-President of the Observatoire national des droits de l'homme (ONDH), Guinea's national human rights commission, was arrested on 26 November. He was held at the Alpha Yaya military barracks in Conakry before being transferred to the detention centre PM III (Poste militaire III). He was not charged or allowed a visit by a lawyer. The authorities informed Amnesty International that Mouctar Diallo was accused of a state security offence.

Arbitrary arrests and detentions

Dozens of people were arbitrarily arrested and detained. The number of people arrested on 28 September remained unknown.