Following is the text of a joint statement by the United States and France on the Guinea elections.
On the eve of Guinea’s second round of presidential elections, the United States and France echo the calls of the Economic Community of West African States, the African Union, and the European Union in urging Guinea to hold its second round of presidential elections on November 7 without further delay.
The continued delay of the electoral process only hurts the people of Guinea, undermines the democratic transition and opens the door for anti-democratic forces. It also slows down Guinea’s prospects for greater economic development and prosperity. This situation must end.
We are deeply concerned by reports of ethnic-based violence and unrest over the last two weeks and ask Guinea’s security forces to continue to refrain from uses of excessive force. We support General Sekouba Konate in his endeavour to ensure the army neutrality and encourage him to continue to guide Guineans towards the end of the process.
We support President Compaoré unceasing efforts towards Guinean transition and welcome his recent initiative in Conakry in which he called on the presidential candidates Cellou Dalein Diallo and Alpha Condé to abide by the Ouagadougou code of conduct.
All Guinean actors, without exception, must place the national interests of Guinea above their own personal, ethnic or political considerations and ban for good ethnic-based provocations or acts of harassment that could incite violence. Only reconciliation will allow the birth of a new Guinea. It is the duty of both presidential candidates to pave the way for an exemplary and historical ballot.
The United States, France and the international community look forward to partnering with a democratic Guinea on economic, humanitarian and security initiatives that will improve the lives of every Guinean citizen. The people of Guinea want and deserve this pivotal moment in their history. It is time for Guinea’s dream of democracy, a dream that has been deferred for more than 50 years, to become a reality.