President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana will visit Guinea on Friday to meet with the country’s new junta leaders, a day after the regional bloc he chairs sanctioned them for deposing President Alpha Conde and urged a return to constitutional governance.
At a session in Ghana on Thursday, the 15-member Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) voted to freeze the financial assets of junta members and their relatives, as well as impose travel bans, and demanded Conde’s unconditional release.
It was the EU’s biggest retaliation yet to Guinea’s military coup, in which soldiers from an elite special forces unit seized possession of the presidential palace and imprisoned Conde after a battle with his presidential guard.
Following coups in Mali and Chad earlier this year, ECOWAS is under pressure to return Guinea to constitutional order, raising worries of a democratic backslide in a region that was beginning to shed its “coup-belt” moniker.
In his opening statement to the summit, Akufo-Addo said, “We are expected to take informed judgments on these subjects that will have long-term ramifications for the stability and defense of our region’s democratic ideals.”