Gabon foiled an attempted military coup on Monday, arresting several plotters just hours after they took over state radio in a bid to end 50 years of rule by President Ali Bongo’s family.

Government spokesman Guy-Bertrand Mapangou told Reuters that four of the five officers who had taken over the state radio in the capital Libreville were arrested. A fifth officer fled and is being pursued, he said.

In a radio message at 4:30 a.m. (0330 GMT), Lieutenant Kelly Ondo Obiang, who described himself as an officer in the Republican Guard, said Bongo’s New Year’s Eve address from Morocco, where he is recovering from a stroke, “reinforced doubts about the president’s ability to continue to carry out of the responsibilities of his office”. [nL8N1X94BQ]

In one of his first television appearances since he suffered the stroke in Saudi Arabia in October, Bongo, 59, slurred his speech and he appeared unable to move his right arm. It is unclear if he is able to walk. He has been in Morocco since November to continue treatment.

Outside the radio station, loyalist soldiers fired teargas to disperse about 300 people who had come out into the streets to support the coup attempt, a Reuters witness said. Helicopters circled overhead.

Most of the beachside capital was quiet, however, and a government spokesman said the situation was under control after the arrests.

news via : African reuters

read more:https://af.reuters.com/article/topNews/idAFKCN1P10Z4-OZATP

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