Gambia: Jammeh Pleads for More Time as Troops Close In

Banjul, The Gambia’s defeated President Yahya Jammeh has asked for a deadline for him to leave office or be forced out by UN-backed forces to be extended until Friday Afternoon.

The earlier deadline of noon passed as the Guinean and Mauritanian presidents arrived in Banjul for last-ditch talks. Jammeh’s elected successor, Adama Barrow, was sworn in as president at a ceremony in Senegal on Thursday.

Troops acting in support of President Barrow have paused their advance. The forces from the Economic Community of West African States (Ecowas) regional grouping are backed by the United Nations. They crossed into The Gambia from Senegal on Thursday but have been told not to advance further until the talks have finished.

Barrow’s legitimacy as president has been recognised internationally, after he won last month’s elections. Jammeh remains at the state house in The Gambia’s capital, where soldiers are calm, the BBC reported.

Mr Jammeh’s term expired at midnight on Wednesday – but, while still president, he engineered a parliamentary vote to extend his presidency. As Barrow has already been sworn in, the country could be said to have two presidents.

Source: Qatar News Agency