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Election in Guinea

Published on November 8, 2010
Statement by Bernard Kouchner, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs

Paris, November 7, 2010

Now that the polling stations have just closed in Guinea and the reports we have indicate that the second ballot took place without major incident, I would like to pay tribute to the milestone the Guinean people have just passed in their long, difficult march towards democracy.

After 50 years of dictatorship, we owe this historic success in the first instance to the efforts of the transition president, General Sékouba Konaté. His perseverance, courage and the fact that he set a standard of responsibility for the Guineans to follow played a decisive role in the success of this transition.

We also owe this success to the mediator, President Compaoré of Burkina Faso, who supported this transition with outstanding skill, tremendous conviction and the utmost tenacity.

The appeal for restraint which the two candidates, Cellou Dalein Diallo and Alpha Condé, issued on the eve of the second round is a mark of responsibility. The signing by their representatives yesterday of an agreement organizing the presence of their delegates throughout the country bodes very well for transparency and conciliation.

Whoever wins the presidential election, the Guinean people deserve to see the same spirit of calmness and responsibility prevail when the votes are counted and the results announced./.

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