- Title: GUINEA: Six dead in pre-election clashes
- Date: 27th June 2010
- Summary: CONAKRY, GUINEA (JUNE 25, 2010) (REUTERS) POSTERS OF PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES STREET SCENE BROKEN CARS BROUGHT BACK FROM VILLAGE INJURED SUPPORTERS OF GUINEA'S UNION FOR DEMOCRATIC FORCES (UFDG)PARTY (SOUNDBITE) (French) AMADOU DIALLO, TRADER, SAYING: "A group of people armed with machetes and knives came over us with stones. Afterwards one of them took a knife to cut my ear, others threw stones in the car, but we accelerated so we can pass them. All these people were wearing Sidya's (Toure) supporter outfits." PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE CELLOU DALEIN DIALLO, LEADER OF GUINEA'S UNION OF DEMOCRATIC FORCES, AT HOME SHAKING HANDS WITH A VISITOR (SOUNDBITE) (French) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE, CELLOU DALEIN DIALLO, LEADER OF GUINEA'S UNION OF DEMOCRATIC FORCES (UFDG), SAYING: "It upsets me a lot because this tarnishes a little the image of my campaign, which went through 33 districts without any hurt or violence. Yesterday truly we were the object of a violent attack by militants of the UFR, and I condemn that, I deplore it, and I ask of my militants to show refrain, not to enter in a revenge and violence state of mind, and make sure that we can go properly to the elections." PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE ALPHA CONDE STANDING ON A CAR BEING WELCOMED BY SUPPORTERS TO CONAKRY SOLDIERS ESCORTING CONDE IN CARS (SOUNDBITE) (French) ANSSOU TOUMBIANO, MEETING OF GUINEAN PEOPLE PARTY (RPG) SUPPORTER, SAYING "I vote for RPG because RPG doesn't make the difference between people, the RPG takes in everyone, everybody's equal, so we should vote for RPG. RPG is a party where there is no racism." STUDENT SELLING COAL MADE OF WOOD (SOUNDBITE) (French) FAMOUSSA YATTARA, STUDENT, SAYING "I'm not choosing my president by his party, but by the competence of the candidate, and what he can bring to the Guinean people." STREET SCENE CROWD STANDING IN FRONT OF THE INDEPENDENT NATIONAL ELECTORAL COMMISSION
- Embargoed: 12th July 2010 13:00
- Location: Guinea
- Country: Guinea
- Topics: Crime / Law Enforcement,Domestic Politics
- Reuters ID: LVAEBXB38N18FMJLTFS1NBU124W8
- Story Text: The people of Guinea go to the polls on Sunday (June 27) in presidential elections seen as the best chance to break from a troubled past.
But as the campaigning drew to a close, violence flared.
Six people died and at least 20 were wounded when supporters of two political parties reportedly fought in the village of Coyah.
Some of the injured were taken to the capital Conakry for treatment; their destroyed vehicles towed into town.
One of the victims, Amadou Diallo, who had his ear cut, described how they were attacked by a group armed with machetes and knives.
"All these people were wearing Sidya's supporter outfits," he said.
Sidya Toure is one of the three main candidates. He was born into the Diakhanke ethnic minority which makes up less than one percent of the population, and is leader of the Union of Republican Forces (UFR).
Witnesses said fighting erupted between UFR supporters and those of the Union of Democratic Forces (UFDG) whose presidential candidate is Cellou Dalein Diallo.
Diallo told Reuters the violence was upsetting as it tarnished the image of his campaign which had gone through 33 districts without any trouble.
"Yesterday truly we were the object of a violent attack by militants of the UFR, and I condemn that, I deplore it," he said, urging his supporters to show restraint and not to take revenge.
Alpha Conde leads the Meeting of Guinean People party, the RPG. Aged 72, he has opposed all three recent and generally unpopular leaders - Captain Moussa Dadis Camara, Lansana Conte and Sekou Toure.
He was poised to win an election against Conte before the government annulled a batch of votes, he was sentenced to death in absentia under Toure's administration. And although he supported Camara's coup in 2008 after Conte's death, he later became a political opponent.
This weekend's elections are considered the first in 50 years when Guineans will have a free vote.
Anssou Toumbiano says he'll be voting for the RPG because "the RPG takes in everyone, everbody's equal."
Student Famoussa Yattara said he would not be choosing the president by his party "but by the competence of the candidate, and what he can bring to the Guinean people." .
Investors in Guinea, the world's top supplier of the aluminum ore bauxite and a major venue for iron ore explorers, crave stability after the 2008 death of strongman ruler Conte ushered in a junta and unrest many feared could spark civil war.
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