- Title: Burkina Faso coup leaders given lengthy jail sentences
- Date: 2nd September 2019
- Summary: OUAGADOUGOU, BURKINA FASO (SEPTEMBER 2, 2019) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (French) LAWYER FOR PLAINTIVES, GUY HERVE KAM, SAYING: "Totally satisfied in so far as the judgement condemns them. Now on the length of the sentence we think the tribunal was clement but as we have said, that is his absolute prerogative." EXTERIOR COURT (SOUNDBITE) (French) LAWYER FOR GENERAL DIENDERE, MATHIEU SOME, SAYING: "The judgement was political, it is ostensibly political and that is clear from the synthesis I got from the legal instruction in this trial." LAWYERS AT ENTRANCE TO COURT (SOUNDBITE) (French) LAWYER FOR GENERAL DIENDERE, MATHIEU SOME, SAYING: "The government in power in September was sitting on a charter and not a constitution therefore there was no legal regime (in place in 2015) so why hold us and condemn us for breach of state security?"
- Embargoed: 16th September 2019 17:32
- Keywords: Gilbert Diendere Djibril Bassole failed coup 2015 trial
- Location: OUAGADOUGOU, BURKINA FASO
- City: OUAGADOUGOU, BURKINA FASO
- Country: Burkina Faso
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA005AUYUO93
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Two senior allies of Burkina Faso's deposed former president Blaise Compaore were sentenced to 10 and 20 years in prison respectively on Monday (September 2) for organising a 2015 coup attempt against a transitional government.
In 2015 protesters, angered by Compaore's attempt to change the constitution to extend his 27-year rule, forced him to flee the West African nation in 2014. He now lives in exile in neighbouring Ivory Coast.
Troops from the elite Presidential Security Regiment under the command of General Gilbert Diendere, Compaore's right-hand man, took members of the transitional government hostage less than a month before elections the following year.
The week-long power grab failed, but 14 people were killed and more than 250 others were wounded as they attempted to resist the putsch.
Diendere was found guilty of murder and breach of state security and handed a 20-year prison term. Compaore's former foreign minister Djibril Bassole, who was accused of being the coup's mastermind, was also sentenced to 10 years in prison for treason.
Diendere's lawyer said he would discuss a possible appeal with his client.
Coup victims and representatives of families who lost relatives in the 2015 attempted overthrow said justice was finally done.
(Production: Thiam Ndiaga, Yvonne Bell, Rosalind Church)
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