Resolution adopted without a vote by the Inter-Parliamentary Council
at its 166th session (Amman, 6 May 2000)

The Inter-Parliamentary Council,

Referring to the outline of the case of Mr. Alpha Condé, a member of the National Assembly of Guinea and candidate in the 1998 presidential election, and President of the opposition Rassemblement du Peuple de Guinée (RPG), as contained in the report of the Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians (CL/166/16(c)­R.1), and to the relevant resolution adopted at its 165th session (October 1999),

Referring also to the report on the Committee's on-site mission conducted from 10 to 14 January 2000, to the observations provided by the Government and to the comments of the lawyers provided thereon as well as to the indictment regarding Mr. Condé and his co-accused,

Recalling that Mr. Condé, a candidate in the presidential election of 1998, was arrested on 15 December 1998 prior to the announcement of the provisional election results and without any previous lifting of his parliamentary immunity; he was charged in January 1999 with “attempt to cross borders, fraudulent export of foreign currency, attempt to recruit mercenaries and breach of State security”,

Pointing out in particular that the charge of breach of State security held against Mr. Condé is based on written material contained in a notepad which was not recognised by its author; the notepad was found in Mr. Condé's travel bag which was seized 10 days after Mr. Condé's arrest in the home of Mr. Morifing Sagno in the absence of both Mr. Condé and Mr. Sagno although both were in detention at the time and thus at the disposal of the authorities; and that, consequently, the defence affirms that the charges result from forcible entry and from tampering with the contents of the bag,

Considering that, according to the Guinean delegation to the 103rd Conference, the following new developments have occurred since the mission took place:

  • The trial of Mr. Condé opened on 12 April 2000 before the National Security Court; the judge admitted defence counsel from abroad who pleaded the illegality of the investigation procedure;
  • On 25 April 2000 the judge rejected all defences of nullity, deeming them to be ill-founded;
  • On 26 April, when the trial resumed, the defence decided to withdraw from the trial and the judge committed ex officio counsel to the accused persons, who refused them;
  • When the trial resumed on 2 May 2000, the accused stated that they had nothing more to say; the judge therefore suspended the trial sine die stating that he was ready to judge them whenever they wished,

Considering that an Amnesty International delegation which went to Guinea in April 2000 met some of Mr. Condé's co-accused and was informed that some had been tortured to extract statements from them; one military officer had even died as a result of such torture; the Guinean delegation to the 103rd Conference confirmed this information, adding that Mr. Condé's co-accused had been unlawfully arrested in recent months by the military and held incommunicado in secret military camps belonging to the President's personal guard (Koundara and Kassa), that is, unauthorised detention centres,

Noting that the President of the National Assembly, by letter N° 011/PAN/geb/2000 of 9 February 2000, referred a request to the President of the Republic for suspension of the judicial proceedings under way against Alpha Condé in accordance with Article 52(4) of the Constitution,

Bearing in mind that the Republic of Guinea is a party to the International Covenant of Civil and Political Rights, the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights, and the Convention against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, which guarantee the right to freedom from arbitrary arrest and detention, the right to freedom from torture and ill-treatment, and the right to fair trial,

  1. Thanks the Guinean authorities and in particular the Prime Minister and the Minister of Justice for their cooperation, which enabled the Committee's delegation to conduct its mission in full and, in particular, to meet with Mr. Alpha Condé in prison under the requisite conditions;
  2. Expresses special thanks to the National Assembly and its President for the welcome they extended to the mission and their efforts to ensure that it was able to carry out its assignment; also thanks the delegation of Guinea to the 103rd Conference, headed by the President of the National Assembly, for the information and observations communicated to the Committee;
  3. Commends the members of the mission on their work and report, and fully endorses their conclusions;
  4. Notes with deep concern that the findings of the mission reveal serious violations of the provisions of the Code of Penal Procedure and tend to indicate the absence of any crime or offence committed by Mr. Alpha Condé, which is corroborated by the alarming allegations of the obtaining of confessions from Mr. Condé's co-accused under duress and the fact that the trial has been adjourned sine die, which has no basis whatsoever in either national or international law;
  5. Is hence led to consider that the prosecution of Mr. Condé is not based on any legally valid motives but rather prompted by political considerations;
  6. Urges the authorities to respect both the rule of law and their obligations under the international human rights treaties to which Guinea has subscribed;
  7. Urges the authorities therefore to release Mr. Alpha Condé and his co-accused immediately and, also without further delay, to launch investigations into the serious allegations of “confessions” obtained under duress;
  8. Expresses deep concern, as the world organisation of national Parliaments, at the evident lack of respect shown by the Government of Guinea for the National Assembly and its members, as emerging from the mission report, and calls on the Government o respect the prerogatives and powers of the other State branches since there can otherwise be no rule of law;
  9. Encourages IPU member Parliaments to give support to the National Assembly of Guinea by whatever means they may deem appropriate;
  10. Requests the Secretary General to convey this resolution to the authorities, inviting them to provide any observations they may have to make;
  11. Requests the Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians to continue examining this case and report to it at its next session (October 2000).

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