Gunfire erupt in Gabon as soldiers seize power, cancel election result

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A dozen Gabonese soldiers appeared on television on Wednesday, declaring that they were “putting an end to the current regime” and calling off an election that President Ali Bongo Ondimba had won, according to official results.

During the announcement, journalists in Gabon’s capital, Libreville, heard gunshots.

While announcing the results’ revocation, one of the soldiers stated that “all the institutions of the republic” had been disbanded.

“We have decided to defend peace by putting an end to the current regime”, one of the soldiers said on TV channel Gabon 24, adding that he was speaking on behalf of the “Committee for the Transition and Restoration of Institutions”.

“To this end, the general elections of 26 August 2023 and the truncated results are cancelled,” he added.

“All the institutions of the republic are dissolved: the government, the Senate, the National Assembly and the Constitutional Court,” he added, announcing the closure of the country’s borders “until further notice”.

Among the soldiers were members of the Republican Guard as well as soldiers of the regular army and police officers.

The statement was also broadcast on Gabon 1 public television.