Africa

Guinea stadium massacre: Minister Claude Pivi charged

  • 28 June 2013
  • From the section Africa
Protester arrested at stadium protest. 28 Sept 2009
Image caption The crackdown on the opposition rally in 2009 was widely condemned

A government minister in Guinea has been charged in connection with a massacre at a stadium in 2009.

Col Claude Pivi is charged with murder, rape and the destruction of property.

At least 157 people died in the Conakry stadium when troops attacked people protesting against military rule. Scores of women were raped.

Col Pivi, now in charge of presidential security, is the seventh military figure to be charged over the events. None has so far been tried.

Rights groups have criticised President Alpha Conde for not moving fast enough to bring those responsible to justice.

Col Pivi was a leading figure in the CNDD military junta led by Capt Moussa Dadis Camara at the time of the massacre on 28 September 2009.

Eyewitnesses said people were shot, stabbed, bludgeoned or trampled to death and women raped and tortured.

Human rights groups and victims' organisations have welcomed the latest charges but urged the government to speed up the process.

"Our concern is that this must not just be a situation whereby people are indicted and then are left to go about their business as normal. We want to see some further advancement on this issue," said Asmaou Diallo, who heads a victims' support group.

"We welcome this indictment as it should help us get to the truth. However, we call on this government to make sure that all those indicted persons still in the country should be removed from their posts until they face justice."

Moussa Dadis Camara seized power in 2008 when long-time leader Lansana Conte died. But not long after the stadium massacre, he went into exile following an assassination attempt.

His deputy oversaw the handover to civilian rule, with veteran opposition leader Alpha Conde winning elections in 2010.

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