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Niger junta leader says no arrests: regional official

by Staff Writers
Niamey (AFP) Oct 15, 2010
Niger junta leader Salou Djibo told regional representatives Friday that no members of the ruling junta had been arrested, a day after confusion over the fate of the regime's former deputy leader.

"We told the head of state, General Salou Djibo, that there are a lot of rumours about who has been arrested, who hasn't been arrested, and he reassured us that at the moment there haven't been any arrests," said James Victor Gbeho, president of the commission of the Economic Community of West African States.

Military and junta sources said Thursday that the former junta number two, Colonel Abdoulaye Badie, had been arrested, but he was later seen at his home.

Badie had been permanent secretary to Djibo, leader of the coup that overthrew Niger's president Mamadou Tandja in February, but the junta leader abolished the post.

Rumours of a coup have swirled in Niamey over the past few weeks.

"We had a frank discussion with the head of state who assured us that there is no threat to the calendar for the transition to democracy," added Gbeho.

The transitional process is due to kick off on October 31 and culminate with a presidential election on January 31, 2011.

The junta plans to hand over to an elected civilian government on April 6, 2011, when the new president is due to be sworn in.

"We received assurances from the head of state that the process of returning to democracy will be completed by the fixed deadline," said Gbeho.

A member of the ruling junta colonel Amadou Diallo, was removed Friday from his post as Equipment minister, according to an official comminique read on national radio.

The reasons for his removal, the only member of the ruling junta to be removed from the government, were not given.

On October 8, Diallo was removed from his post as the prosecutor before the military tribunal.

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Niger former junta number two arrested: family
Niamey (AFP) Oct 16, 2010
The former number two of Niger's junta, Colonel Abdoulaye Badie, was arrested late Friday, his family said, despite an earlier claim by the head of state that no government member had been detained. Family members told AFP that Badie was arrested around 6:30 pm (1730 GMT) at his home. "We do not know where he is now. We are worried," said an associate, speaking on condition of anonymity. ... read more

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