West African nations launch military operation in Gambia

West African nations launch military operation in Gambia

West African nations launch military operation in Gambia

African troops have suspended an operation to force Gambian leader Yahya Jammeh to hand over power, launching a last bid to convince him to leave the country through talks, the president of regional bloc ECOWAS said Thursday.

Gambians, exhausted of Jammeh's repressive leadership, celebrated in the streets Thursday after news that Barrow had been sworn into office in Senegal. The small room held about 40 people, including Senegal's prime minister and the head of Gambia's electoral commission. They said they had no resistance from the Gambian army. He ordered Gambia's armed forces to remain in their barracks.

Nigeria and Ghana were sending troops and air power to Senegal to join a Dakar-led regional force preparing to carry out a possible military intervention in The Gambia.

Dressed all in white, 51-year-old Barrow waved to crowds at the ceremony that anointed him, seeking to end the 22-year rule of Jammeh, who has not been seen but is believed to be still in Banjul.

Gambian soldiers guarding the capital said they were disgruntled with Jammeh.

The leader declared his decision to leave office - after weeks of stalling through threats and legal action - was his alone, despite enormous pressure from the global community.

"After the inauguration of Adama Barrow, the trickle of power flowing to him will become more of a flood", Vines said.

The United Nations Thursday assured Adama Barrow, newly sworn- in President of The Gambia of the full support of the world body.

But now the deadline has passed they are closing in on Banjul, the capital. Although the election was regarded by global observers as legitimate, Jammeh nullified the vote and has refused to leave office.

According to Guinean officials, Jammeh is expected to move to Conakry after leaving Gambia.

Gambia's defeated leader Yahya Jammeh says he has chose to relinquish power, after hours of talks with regional leaders and the threat by a regional military force to make him leave.

"What the Senegalese said about the midnight deadline was to put pressure on Jammeh". He declared a 90-day state of emergency, blaming irregularities in the electoral process. The African Union no longer recognizes his authority.

He went on to stress the importance of the support of his West African neighbours in enforcing the democratic outcome of Gambia's elections last month.

"I would like to inform you that Yaya Jammeh agreed to relinquish power and leave the country", he said. The presidents of Guinea and Mauritania have arrived for last-minute talks. Tourism is a mainstay in the country of 1.8 million and the economy is otherwise reliant on peanut production and remittances from overseas.

The inauguration raised hopes at home and overseas.

His estate, located nearly on the border with The Gambia's sole neighbour Senegal, was heavily fortified on Friday, witnesses said.

Inside Gambia, many people watched, hugged and cheered: "New Gambia, new Gambia!" "I love my men".

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