NewsWorldCoups in West Africa: "Whose turn?"

Coups in West Africa: “Whose turn?”


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On the front page of the press, this Tuesday, January 25, the reactions to the coup d’état in Burkina Faso, particularly in France, where the event is perceived as a new blow for Operation Barkhane in the Sahel. The decision of former Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri to leave politics. And a new episode of “Partygate” in the UK.

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On the front page of the press, reactions to the coup in Burkina Faso, where the military dismissed President Roch Marc Kaboré on Monday, January 24.

In addition to the “explosive cocktail” of “incessant bickering between politicians” and “the leaders’ inability to provide security”, Wakat Sera also explains this coup by a “contagion effect” from neighboring Mali. While the African Cup of Nations, the CAN, is in full swing, the Burkinabé site spins the football metaphor: “After a diabolical dribble that unseated the Malian defense, Colonel Assimi Goïta sent a short pass to Guinean Colonel Mamady Doumbouya, who made a long cross towards Burkinabe Colonel Paul Henri Sandaogo Damiba, the new strongman of the country, who with an unstoppable head, pilloried goalkeeper Roch Marc Christian Kaboré”.

With this coup de force, a new period of questioning opens for the country of honest men. “What tomorrow for Burkina Faso?” : The country hopes that “the situation does not expose (its population) to heavy international sanctions”, like Mali. The Burkinabè newspaper believes that it is time for Africans “to review their electoral system from top to bottom”, “so that beyond the legality of the ballot box”, the elected presidents “have the legitimacy necessary to be safe from coups d’etat”.

After Mali, Guinea and Burkina Faso, “whose turn is it?” Asks The Djely. According to the Guinean news site, West Africa is currently “paying the price for the ethical decadence of its leaders”. According to him, two of them would particularly illustrate “this harmful setback”: the former Guinean President Alpha Condé and the current Ivorian President Alassane Ouattara, two former martyred opponents (who have) made the choice, with assumed arrogance, to afford third terms”, thus sending a very bad signal to the whole region. According to The Djely, such would be the “typical leader” of today’s West Africa: “no empathy, but a contempt erected in behavior. Hence the casualness with which some of them approached the degradation of the security situation in the Sahel. It is therefore not surprising that everywhere we celebrate their fall. It is not surprising that everywhere the army wants to exploit this gap between the leaders and the populations”. “What happened in Mali, Guinea and yesterday in Burkina Faso, is likely to happen soon in Niamey, Abidjan, Cotonou or even Dakar”, prophesies site, which also evokes a “contagion effect” , reinforced by a context “where France is perceived as the accomplice of the devil”.

“Is West Africa inventing a new concept? That of a ‘popular military coup'”, writes Release. According to the newspaper, “corruption scandals and the inability to curb the jihadists have ended up discrediting the civil power” in the region. “The coup attempt in Burkina threatens the future of Operation Barkhane and risks dealing a fatal blow to European military engagement in the sub-region”: The cross speaks of “a disaster scenario for France”, which considers the Sahel “as capital for its security and that of Europe”. The newspaper wonders “if this is still the case”, as the presidential candidates “are stingy with proposals on the subject”.

France, also concerned by the situation in Lebanon, where former Prime Minister Saad Hariri announced yesterday his retirement from political life. The Orient By Day evokes “an earthquake for the Sunni scene and to a lesser extent for Lebanon”. According to the Lebanese newspaper, “the withdrawal of Saad Hariri completely changes the political equation”, with the approach of the legislative elections scheduled for next May, “since it creates a void that no one today (would) be able to fill “. “But because it is part of a context of decline, for years, of the Hariri influence, and because the hypothesis has been on the table for weeks, the reactions have remained measured.”

Is his resignation to him inevitable? In the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson does not get out of “Partygate”. “Another day, another party”, announces, a bit disillusioned, The Daily Mirror. Latest episode of the soap opera “Partygate”: the participation of the British Prime Minister in a birthday party organized in his honor at 10 Downing Street – a party in which 30 guests participated on June 19, 2020, in full confinement. A beautiful “slice of hypocrisy”, strangles the tabloid. “No, Boris, you can’t have butter and butter money” (“You can’t have your birthday cake and eat it”): The Sun reports that the Prime Minister’s entourage tried to defend him, once again, specifying, this time, that he had only stayed 10 minutes. That changes everything…

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