On July 5, 2022, at 2:00 p.m., three human rights defenders who are members of the National Front for the Defense of the Constitution (FNDC), two of whom are also members of Turning the Page Guinea (TLP-Guinea), were violently arrested and forcibly dragged into pickup trucks by the Second Brigade for the Repression of Banditry (BRB). At the time of their arrest, they were holding a press conference to comment on socio-political news related to the latest conclusions of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) at the FNDC headquarters. They were then taken to the Central Directorate of the Judicial Police (DCPJ). Injured during the arrest, they were denied medical treatment despite the request of their lawyers.
Oumar Sylla, alias Foniké Mengué, deputy coordinator of TLP-Guinée, Billo Bah, head of the youth wing of TLP-Guinée, and Djanii Alpha, artist and head of the promotion of active citizenship of the FNDC, were arrested without a warrant and without prior summons. While in police custody, Oumar Sylla and Billo Bah were charged with contempt of court and disrespect for justice, while Djanii Alpha was charged with insult. The activists were referred to the court of first instance in Dixinn later today. Prosecutions had already been initiated on July 4 by Attorney General Charles Wright against Oumar Sylla and Billo Bah for allegedly producing and disseminating through a computer system comments deemed "offensive to members of the National Council of the Transition.
During the arrest, several journalists were also assaulted as law enforcement officials attempted to prevent them from filming the scene.
The military transition that has been in place since September 5, 2021, following the coup d'état against Alpha Conde, has plunged Guinea into a new cycle of repression. After banning demonstrations in recent months, the junta has now taken the next step of arbitrary arrests in a general effort to muzzle any dissenting voice.
We condemn in the strongest terms the arbitrary arrest of Oumar Sylla, Billo Bah and Djanii Alpha and call for their immediate release and the lifting of all charges against them.
July 6, 2022
- ACAT France
- AfricanDefenders (Réseau panafricain de défenseurs des droits humains)
- Agir ensemble pour les droits humains
- FIDH, in the framework of the Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders
- Tournons La Page
- OMCT (World Organization Against Torture), within the framework of the Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders
- Réseau Ouest Africain des Défenseurs des Droits Humains (ROADDH/WAHRDN)
- Coordination des Organisations de Défense des Droits Humains (Guinée)
- Réseau Nigérien des Défenseurs des Droits Humains (RNDDH/NHRDN)
- Coalition des Défenseurs des Droits Humains-Bénin (CDDH-Bénin)
- Coalition Ivoirienne des Défenseurs des Droits Humains (CIDDH)
- Association des Femmes Cheffes de Famille (AFCF)
- Coalition Burkinabè des Défenseurs des Droits Humains (CBDDH)
- Coalition Togolaise des Défenseurs des Droits Humains (CTDDH)
- Institut des Médias pour la Démocratie et les Droits de l’Homme (IM2DH)
- Coalition Sénégalaise des défenseurs des Droits Humains (CoSeDDH)
- Human Rights Defenders’ Network-Sierra Leone (HRDN-SL)
Press Contacts :
Ibrahima Diallo, TLP Guinea National Coordinator