Guinea-Bissau's new army is submissive to political power

April 2, 2010 12:09 pm 

DAKAR, April 2 — Guinea-Bissau's new army chief Antonio Indjai said on Thursday the country's army is submissive to political power, according to news reaching here.

The move came after the west African nation witnessed a political unrest early in the day.

In a statement read on national radio, the new army chief reiterated that the army remains to political power.

Guinea-Bissau's Prime Minister Carlos Gomes Junior was briefly detained on Thursday by military officers amid renewed fears of coup in the Atlantic Ocean country in West Africa.

Instability including the 1998-1999 civil war has haunted the country of 1.5 million population since its independence from Portugal 35 years ago. Coup attempts have repeatedly hit the headlines in Guinea-Bissau, especially since 2008.

In the latest incident, which is already seen by many as another coup d'etat, Minister of Territorial Administration Luis Sanca was also taken hostage after the military officers broke into the office of the prime minister in the capital Bissau.

On Thursday morning, national radio stopped broadcasting programs and started playing military songs.

In the capital city, banks and office buildings were shut down.On the streets, only military vehicles could be seen moving, witnesses told Xinhua by phone.

Reports reaching here said the situation in the capital in under control now.

The West African country of 1.5 million population foiled a mutiny after holding a legislative election in November 2008, when the African Party for the Independence of Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde (PAIGC) won the victory.

The country is among the poorest in the world, being ranked the 175th out of 177 nations in the U.N. Development Program's Human Development Index. (PNA/Xinhua)

DCT/utb

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