UN warns Togo over coup reprisals

21/04/2009
UN warns Togo over coup reprisals

The United Nations' top regional envoy has warned Togo's government to respect the country's laws as it seeks those responsible for an apparent attempted coup.

Said Jinnit was speaking after talks with President Faure Gnassingbe in the capital Lome late Monday."The wish of the United Nations is that the investigation is treated in conformity with the law and in the framework of strict respect for judicial and legal procedures in force in Togo and under the norms of international law," Jinnit said on state television.

Jinnit, the UN secretary general's Special Envoy to West Africa, said he had received assurances from Gnassingbe that the goverment would adhere to judicial procedures in its probe of what Gnassingbe said on Friday was an attempted coup.

A former defence minister and ruling party heavyweight, Kpatcha Gnassignbe, who is also the president's half-brother, has been accused by state prosecutors of "trying to undermine state security," with five military officers and a number of civilians.

Faure Gnassingbe did not directly accuse his sibling when he denounced the apparent coup attempt in a televised address on Friday.

Another brother of the president, Essolizam Gnassingbe, has also been detained.

Benin's Defence Minister Issifou Kogui N'douro also met Gnassingbe on Monday, to receive a message of support from the neighbouring country's president Boni Yayi.

 

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