US pauses aid to Gabon after coup

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The US is halting its aid to Gabon following last month's coup.

“We are pausing certain foreign assistance programs that benefit the government of Gabon while we evaluate the unconstitutional intervention by members of the country’s military,” US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement.

It said the temporary measure was in line with actions taken by the regional Central African bloc, the African Union (AU) and other global partners following the coup. Gabon's membership of the Economic Community of Central African States (Eccas) and the AU was suspended following the coup.

The decision to suspend aid to Gabon will remain "while we review the facts on the ground”, the State Department said.

It however noted that operational activities in the country were continuing, including diplomatic and consular operations to support US citizens.

On 30 August, Gabonese military leaders overthrew President Ali Bongo just after he was declared the winner of an election.

President Bongo had been in power since 2009. He succeeded his father, Omar Bongo, who first became president in 1967.

Gabon's junta has promised to organise free and fair elections but has not set out a timetable.

A new prime minister appointed by the junta told the BBC earlier this month that the country would hold fresh elections within the next two years.

Source: BBC 

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